If you're the kind of person, who thinks 'hell' is a naughty word, this study probably isn't for you. Often, people who swear a lot are surrounded by negative connotations. While the use of foul language can make someone seem more aggressive, it also apparently means that they are more likely to be trustworthy, this surprising study has revealed. A new study, set to be published shortly in the journal Social Psychological and Personality Science, makes this claim linking cursing to trustworthiness, as well as revealing which of the States of America have the dirtiest mouths.
The study looked at Facebook status updates from all around the USA, counting up the prevalence of swear words used by citizens of each state so that calculation of overall 'state profanity rate' could be done. This was then compared to data from the State Integrity Investigation.
The top three states for potty-mouthed citizens were Connecticut, Delaware and New Jersey, all with state profanity rates of over 50%. On the other hand, the states with the cleanest vocabularies were Utah, Arkansas and South Carolina.
New Jersey just pipped Iowa to the title of the most trustworthy state, with Connecticut also ringing in third place. All three states scored over 85 out of 100. At the other end of the scale, the worst scorers were Georgia, South Dakota and Wyoming.
The general trend shows that states with higher scores on the integrity test scale also had higher profanity values. This doesn't always mean that states with higher profanity rates were more trustworthy, as both Nevada and Maryland had some of the highest profanity rates while ranking in the bottom half for integrity.
While the relationship seems to hold true, it doesn't mean that you should believe everyone that drops a few F's and C's in every conversation. Correlation doesn't always mean causation, as the scientists are keen to point it out.
There are suggestions, however, that people who swear more often are infact more trustworthy, so there is truth to the study! It's also interesting to see where the foulest places in America are.
Bonus point goes to the authors of this study, who couldn't resist a joke. They titled their work "Frankly, We Do Give A Damn" and showed that scientists know how to have a laugh too!
Remember this video? Not that anyone should need an excuse to watch it, but feel free to have another giggle at it!