I am sure that all of us at some time or another have made a video or a recording for a project or some other reason. And I would say that probably everyone hates the sound of their own voice. Maybe there are a few exceptions like James Earl Jones or the guy from the Dos Equis commercials. This made me very curious as to why this is. It seems very unlikely that every person on earth just has an annoying voice, and with that explanation then everyone would hate everyone else’s voice as well as their own. I decided to try and find out the answer because it just seemed odd to me that something like this occurs.
According to Kate Goldbaum when we hear something, the icicles in our ear vibrate against the ear drum which allows us to hear. However the ossicles also vibrate even more when we talk, so this causes the sound that we hear to be interfered with a little bit, and will make our voice sound lower and a little bit different. Also because our ear drum is very close to our mouths, we will hear the sound very loudly which can also affect how we perceive the sound. When we hear our voice on a recording we do not have any of this interference happening, which allows us to hear what we truly sound like. Now this gives an explanation for why our voice sounds different when we hear a recording, but it doesn’t give a good answer as to why the sound is unappealing to us. Kate Goldbaum believes it is most likely because it is unfamiliar. We are used to hearing ourselves not on a recording, so we have an idea of what our voice sounds like. However when we hear a recording of ourselves it is not what we think we sound like, so this could cause us to dislike it.
Unfortunately I was unable to find any experiments pertaining to this topic. If I was to do an experiment on this, I would want to try and find out how different our recorded voice is compared to what we think our voice sounds like. In order to do this I would get a large sample of people so the results will be more definitive. Then one by on I would have people listen to recordings of various people and they would tell me who’s voice it is. I would have recordings from family members, famous people, and of course of themselves. It would be interesting to see if people are able to still identify their voice, or if their perception of their voice is too different then the recording to identify themselves. If I had to guess I would say that most people would not be able to identify their own voice.
It seems pretty apparent that our voice sounds different in recordings because their is no interference. Our voice gets muttered by vibrations when we are speaking, but this does not happen with a recording, so the two sound different. And we can not know for sure why we don’t like the sound of our voice, but a good possible explanation seems to be that we are unfamiliar with the sound. It is not the sound we are expecting, and therefore do not like it because it catches us off guard. All in all this is a peculiar topic, but it seems like we have a decent understanding of what is occurring.