No hot air! Beano’s academic study into what makes farting funny reveals the wind that will get everyone giggling
Scientist Dr Helen Pilcher's 'Flatulence Report’ for Beano identifies the most amusing sound of all
Researchers assessed 176 different farts – ranging in sound from low to high pitched, short to long, dry to wet, from loud to squeaking
Focus groups and a public vote to find the fart most likely to have Brits in stitches
Scientists devised a mathematical formula for the funniest farts, which will be loud, long, wet and socially embarrassing
Beano comes up trumps! Listen to the funniest fart at www.beano.com/farts
Watch the video: www.beano.com/farts
Scientists have sought an answer to the age old question of what makes farting funny, as a new in-depth study into flatulence, published today, reveals the world’s funniest fart sound.
Beano specially commissioned a ground-breaking scientific study - the Flatulence Report – which finally unveils the mathematical formula to the wind most likely to have listeners laughing.
With the help of Beano boffins, sound specialists Bose Professional and scientist Dr Helen Pilcher, the team studied recordings of 176 different farting noises.The full fart spectrum ranged in sound from low to high pitch, short to long, dry to wet and from loud to squeaking.
Focus groups across the UK then scored each against a number of metrics, including a funniness scale of 1 to 10. The top ten funniest farts were then tested and voted on by a broad sample group of Brits of all ages.
By statistically analysing the sounds and scores, Dr Pilcher and her team identified key factors and devised a mathematical formula to describe the world’s funniest fart sound.
The research revealed the 'perfect', side-splitting fart is 'intense'. The funniest farts in the study were up to two times noisier than the least funny. It is also long. The funniest fart in the survey lasted four seconds; the least funny - one second.
A 'gender factor' means that any fart is likely to be found 5% funnier by men than women. Unsurprisingly, age is important with kids finding farts 23% funnier than adults, but with young adults 18-24yr olds being the least amused. The amusement of kids proved infectious with adults scoring sounds 25% funnier when kids are around
Dr Pilcher and her team concluded that socially embarrassing farts are funniest with messy-sounding, wet wind being more awkward than a dry delivery. A fart among friends is far less comic than a TV presenter letting one slip live on air.
Her formula for the funniness of a fart is explained as:
F = (I x L)S x k
(A x g)
I = Intensity of the fart (dB)
L = Length of fart (sec)
S = Social embarrassment (rated on a scale of 1 to 3)
k = Number of kids present
A = Age of the listener (years)
g = Gender factor: If female, multiply by 1.05
The funniest fart of all, which had a mean score of 8.27 out of 10 in the public vote, was described by some of the 100 participants as ‘unfortunate’ and ‘potentially messy.’
Dr Pilcher said: “The funniest fart is long, loud and ever so slightly wet. This gives it the potential to cause major social embarrassment.
The research and our formula show how funny farts are. It’s as simple as that. Anyone who says they’ve never farted or found a fart funny has pants that are probably on fire.”
Mike Stirling, Editorial Director of Beano Studios said, “Beano has always been the authority on LOLZ, worldwide, so we hired some genuine boffins to prove it, by helping us release the funniest fart of all time – you know, for science.”
The public can also visit Beano’s audio partner Bose and request to hear the fart on their professional sound system at their flagship store in London’s Regent Street.
A special soundwave fart installation can be seen at Beano’s offices at 185 Fleet Street, London, where visitors can listen to the world’s funniest fart at a touch of the button. To listen to the world’s funniest fart and more visit www.beano.com/farts
About the History of Farting in Culture:
According to British academic and poet Paul MacDonald, the oldest joke in recorded history – which dates back to the Sumerians in 1900 BC – was a fart joke: “Something which has never occurred since time immemorial; a young woman did not fart in her husband’s lap.
In Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales - Miller’s Tale; Nicholas and Absalom are vying for the same girl, and Nicholas decides to humiliate his rival. So he waits at the window for Absalom to beckon the girl. And just when he does, Nicholas’ rear protrudes to “let fly a fart with a noise as great as a clap of thunder, so that Absalom was almost overcome by the force of it.”
Even the great Bard of Avon himself, William Shakespeare, resorted to a flatulence pun in his play The Comedy of Errors, where Dromio of Ephesus declares, “A man may break a word with you, sir; and words are but wind; Ay, and break it in your face, so he break it not behind.”
Mark Twain’s spoof entitled 1601 features the flatus. In this imagined conversation between Queen Elizabeth’s court and a few renowned writers, someone among the company passes gas: “In ye heat of ye talk it befel yt one did breake wind, yielding an exceding mightie and distresfull stink, whereat all did laugh full sore.”
Jonathan Swift, the author of the classic Gulliver’s Travels, devoted an entire book to the subject with The Benefit of Farting Explained
Facts about farts:
Humans pass 500 to 1,500 millilitres of gas per day, says Purna Kashyap, gastereontologist at the Mayo Clinic, USA. Source: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1378885/
The average healthy human passes wind about 15 times a day. An 85 year old will have farted 465,375 times in a life time according to Alex Sherman, MD, of Concorde Gastroenterology in Manhattan. Source: https://www.menshealth.com/health/a19623924/why-some-of-your-farts-smell/
About Beano Studios:
Beano Studios is a rebellious content business, driven by insight and data, which creates, curates and delivers entertainment for kids of all ages worldwide. The Studio produces diverse entertainment across multiple destinations; including TV, digital content, theatrical projects, consumer products, plus the legendary comic and annual.
The multi-award-winning Beano.com is the UK’s fastest growing kid’s entertainment site, with 5M monthly reach across the Beano network.
Beano Studios’ International Emmy nominated Dennis & Gnasher: Unleashed! has now landed on Netflix in the US after becoming the CBBC’s highest rated animation at launch and sold across Europe. In 2018 SO Beano!, a presenter-led entertainment show inspired by the hottest trends and most loved content on Beano.com, launched on Sky Kids.
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About Helen Pilcher
Dr Helen Pilcher is a scientist, comedian and writer, whose work often bridges the gap between science and humour. Her first book, ‘Bring Back the King – the New Science of De-extinction’ was Radio 2’s Fact Not Fiction Book of the Week, and it has been described as ‘science at its funniest.’ Years of stand-up comedy and academic research means that Dr Pilcher is perfectly placed to study the science behind farts and what makes them funny.
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