Nothing gets people huffing and puffing quite like a popscience article making bold, crazy claims, so here's a little gift for the righteously indignant courtesy of Wired:
Cognitive scientists have found that people attach more positive meanings to words made up of letters from the right side of keyboards than to words made up of letters from the left side. They're calling it "the QWERTY effect."
The theory behind the correlation is that combinations that fall on the right side of the keyboard tend to be easier to type than those on the left. (The right side has fewer letters, making them all ever so slightly easier for your fingers to reach.)
To gather data, researchers took 1,000-word indexes from English, Spanish and Dutch, and compared words' perceived positivity (on a scale of 1-9) with their location on the QWERTY keyboard.
Across the board, words with more right-sided letters scored higher on the positivity scale than did left-sided words. The effect was most pronounced in neologisms coined after the QWERTY keyboard was invented (think: "LOL," "blog," "Bielieber") and in pseudowords invented for the purposes of the study. Right or left-handedness of the participants didn't seem to make a difference.
Of course, there are a couple problems with the methodology. While the authors were thoughtful enough to control for the effects of language, word length, letter frequency, and participants' right or left-handedness, they also claim to have consulted "www.etymology.com" and Urban Dictionary to verify words' dates of origin. The first of those websites does not exist. The second is Urban Dictionary.
But you know what? It was a fun little study and no one got hurt, so let's not hate on it too much.
To find out how much your friends and colleagues subconsciously hate you, type out your name and see where the letters fall.
Most of mine are on the left side.
Nevermind, this study is bullshit.
[Image via Shutterstock]