The internet has erupted in disagreement over an audio clip in which people hear totally different words when a speaker says it repeatedly. Some hear “Laurel,” while others hear “Yanny.” Have you tried to hear it?
The New York Times even built a tool to gradually “accentuate different frequencies in the original audio clip. Which word or name do you hear, and how far do you have to move the slider to hear the other? (The slider’s center point represents the original recording.)” Click here to try that out.
Families were torn in two — as some people heard one word and others heard the other — and people legitimately weren’t sure if others were jerking their chain. Everyone seemed pretty sure that they were hearing the only possible interpretation of the word.
And now the White House is getting in on the fun.
Ivanka Trump is on Team Laurel. “So clearly Laurel.”
The New York Times describes the rest of the White House’s response, including from Donald Trump himself:
Mercedes Schlapp, the White House’s director of strategic communications, disagreed. “Yanny’s the winner,” she said. “Laurel’s the loser.”
Kellyanne Conway, counselor to the president, and Sarah Huckabee Sanders, the White House press secretary, turned their responses into self-referential quips. Ms. Conway, who has been criticized for presenting “alternative facts” on behalf of the president, said she heard Laurel. “But I could deflect and divert to Yanny if you need me to,” she added.
Answering a question about whether she heard Laurel, Ms. Sanders inserted one of Mr. Trump’s favored talking points. “Clearly you’re getting your information from CNN because that’s fake news,” she said. “All I hear is Yanny.”
Mr. Pence, as if out of the loop, asked simply, “Who’s Yanny?”
Mr. Trump did not quite answer the question at hand, and instead referred to his most famous misspelling on Twitter.
“I hear covfefe,” he said.
Watch their (very funny) video below:
— The White House (@WhiteHouse) May 17, 2018