字幕表 動画を再生する 英語字幕をプリント Hey, Vsauce. Michael here. The loudest clap ever recorded clocked in at 113 decibels. And the world record for fastest clapping was recently set at 802 claps per minute. Clapping is the most common human body noise others are meant to hear that doesn't involve the vocal cords. It's a great built-in percussion instrument. But clapping has also become a collective social gesture that we use in groups to express admiration, approval. Especially for things that happen on stage. So here I am on stage. But to show approval, to show that they like things, why do humans clap? Amazing question! When applauding, a person creates claps at a rate of about 2.5-5 claps per second. Kinetic energy from the hands is converted into acoustic energy, mainly within the 2200 to 2800 hertz range, the frequencies clap on, clap off devices detect. But many other frequencies are created during a single clap. And different hand positions create different spectra of frequencies, most of which are not whole number multiples of each other, which is why a clap can't make a musical note. A discernible definite pitch the way a clarinet or piano or the human voice can. If vocalisations can be so finely controlled, why clap? I mean, it's such a crude, messy noise. Well, at a fundamental and physiological level the impulse to clap may have originated as a reaction to an overflowing of enthusiasm, an immediate and primitive reaction to excitement. Steven Connor colourfully puts it this way: "If the distinctive sound of the human is the sound of language, then sound produced from other places than the mouth, always has the taint of the gratuitous, the excessive, or the proscribed. Clapping is the benign superflux of the body, the diarrhoea of sound." He calls it a spilling over of feeling. A burst of energy unfiltered by language or thought. It's a way to burn off extra enthusiasm, but if clapping is so natural and involuntary to the individual, how did it become coded into western etiquette? An expected behavior you sometimes feel pressured to do, even if you don't want to. Desmond Morris called modern clapping patting a performer on the back from a distance. And other theories have called clapping high fiving yourself for something someone else has done. But in its current form there is another thing besides yourself and the performance that might be truly driving applause. A super organism called The Crowd. A study published in the Journal of the Royal Society found that an individual's contribution to applause seems to have less to do with their actual opinion as to the quality of the performance and has more to do with the behavior of the collective group, the anonymous. Group voice aspect of applause also makes sense, when you consider the fact that clapping is a great equalizer. Studies have shown that, as opposed to vocalizations, which can betray a lot about the people who make them, subjects cannot guess better than chance, whether the clap they hear is from a man or a woman, nor can they guess the size of the individual, based solely on the sound of their clap. Clapping may have become the standard nonverbal gesture of admiration, because it is arguably the loudest, the easiest and the most democratic. Performers can't here a thumbs-up or a wink. Not everyone can snap their fingers and clapping is less disruptive than stomping feet or waving around big objects. Moreover, historically, authorities have encouraged clapping. In the sixth century BC, Cleisthenes came to power in Ancient Greece as a democratic reformer and made behaviors like clapping a civic duty, the proper way for the masses to express admiration for their leader. There wasn't enough time for everyone to meet and greet his or her leader, but they could all greet their leader together, as one super organism with one voice - applause. By the early 19th century the desire to code appropriate group reactions and encourage them by example was quite official. Agencies offered claques for hire, professional applauders, who would memorize operas, attend them, like normal opera goers, and clap, cry or laugh at appropriate times, so that the actual audience would know when to properly do what. It's interesting that five or six months after being born human babies begin to realize that their hands can work together. Clapping is a natural reaction to this realization but parenting books have to advise parents to teach their children to connect clapping with group happiness and celebration. The connection itself not being inevitable. To this day, applause signs reinforce audience behavior, simply because those with the authority are requesting it. Not because it is a natural reaction but because it can be, and historically has been, socially imposed. So, what's the future of applauds? Well, last week I hung out with the guys from Grand Illusions, really fascinating channel. And they pointed out something strange. How many times have you listened to your favorite song? Probably quite a few, right? You've listened to songs you don't like plenty of times. But as recently as a 150 year ago, people only heard their favorite symphony maybe two or three times in their entire life. If you wanted music, you had to go to a concert or pick up an instrument or sing. There was no other way. But now, because of recorded music, MP3 players and phones and tablets and personal computers and digital libraries allow us to be an audience of one. An audience all by ourselves, not just when professionals get together and draw a crown. In the 1990s, Faith Popcorn gave this broader phenomenon a name: cocooning. The Internet, home entertainment, cell phones, alarm systems, self-checkout, filters for our personal air and water are all paraphernalia of cocooning. A tendency toward more lonely, solitary experiences in the last 30 years. In my episode about the friend zone, I talk about how cocooning might be making friendship, meeting new people and new unexpected ideas a veining experience. But applause is safe, right? I mean, applause isn't about meeting new people, it's about becoming them. Becoming a super organism that speaks with one unindividuated roar. And concerts and live performances are still big parts of our lives. But what's fascinating is that more entertainment is more available than ever before. And despite being TV shows, movies, games and music, this new entertainment is increasingly consumed like books. In solitude, alone. You don't need to applaud alone in a cocoon, but to be sure, alone on the Internet we don't applaud but we do like and share and favorite and retweet. Those actions might be a sort of ersatz applause. In real life your clap is lost in the crowd, aggregated into the total sound. And online, so are your likes and favorites. They join a collective gesture as a sort of digital applause. A pessimist might feel like these new collective gestures are hollow, lonely, a sad replacement for actual social experiences. But what's really happening? Because a like is not necessarily lonely. A retweet by its very nature isn't a clap lost in the crowd, it's a clap that joins the crowd, but is also traceable directly back to you. Maybe cocooning, maybe the rise of applause substitutes, like digital applause, is something to be worried about, or maybe it's the natural result of having so many applause-worthy things just a few clicks away. We can't applaud all of them, so we have evolved more scaleable reactions, which, incidentally, are more personal, instead of being pathetic clicks from an increasingly isolated, cocooned population. Digital applause might be like something else that comes from cocoons and having more of them. Something beautiful. Butterflies. And as always, thanks for watching.