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  Phone calls 'annoy nosey people'
Updated 21 April 2004, 18.39
Mobile phone
Most of us have got annoyed when listening to other people chatting on their mobile phones. Now researchers say they've worked out the reason why.

It's because we're nosey. We can't bear listening to just half a conversation and not knowing what the person on the other end of the line is saying.

Sixty-four people were asked to rate how irritating they found phone calls compared to face-to-face chats.

Phone calls were more annoying, mainly because people couldn't answer back.

"There is a need to understand what is said and to talk back. I was surprised at just how annoying people find mobile conversations," said the professor who carried out the research.

Influence

The study also looked at how seating can influence how irritated people get.

Train passengers tended to be more annoyed - possibly because they were sat opposite the caller, rather than shoulder-to-shoulder.

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