Paul L. Caron
Dean



Monday, October 1, 2018

Boring Speakers Talk Longer

NatureNature, Do Boring Speakers Really Talk For Longer?:

Dull talks at conferences can feel interminable. Or could it be that they really do go on for longer?

I investigated this idea at a meeting where speakers were given 12-minute slots. I sat in on 50 talks for which I recorded the start and end time. I decided whether the talk was boring after 4 minutes, long before it became apparent whether the speaker would run overtime. The 34 interesting talks lasted, on average, a punctual 11 minutes and 42 seconds. The 16 boring ones dragged on for 13 minutes and 12 seconds (thereby wasting a statistically significant 1.5 min; t-test, t = 2.91, P = 0.007).

For every 70 seconds that a speaker droned on, the odds that their talk had been boring doubled. For the audience, this is exciting news. Boring talks that seem interminable actually do go on for longer.

https://taxprof.typepad.com/taxprof_blog/2018/10/boring-speakers-talk-longer.html

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Comments

It only seems longer because they're boring

Posted by: Mike Livingston | Oct 2, 2018 11:04:01 PM