South Carolina

December 5, 2013

Yes ma'am: SC comes in 1st in politeness, study says

A study reveals South Carolinians are among the most courteous people in the nation, and Ohioans among the least.

The study did not check to see if the phrase "Bless your heart," understood in its true meaning when used by SC residents, might negate the Palmetto State's ranking.

Marchex Inc. published the results awhile ago, in May during National Etiquette Week, but the study began attracting notice this week. Marchex specializes in mobile ad technology and conducted the study by examining 600,000 phone calls made to businesses and recorded over a 12-month period. They looked for curse words and polite phrases such as "please" and "thank you".

The results were broken into two spectrums: Most-to-least polite and most-to-least profane.

States most likely to use polite words were South Carolina, North Carolina, Maryland, Louisiana and Georgia. Callers more likely to leave out polite terms came from Wisconsin, Massachusetts, Indiana, Tennessee and, claiming the dubious distinction of having both rude and profane callers, Ohio.

In the profanity spectrum, Washington State residents cursed the least, about once in every 300 conversations, according to Marchex. Ohioans cursed twice as much. Other profane-averse states were Massachusetts (they won't say thank you, but they won't swear at you, either), Arizona, Texas and Virginia.

Following Ohio as curse-heavy states were Maryland, New Jersey, Louisiana (profane, but polite about it) and Illinois.

Also from the study:

Men curse more than women (66% of curses were from men)

Longer calls resulted in more cursing

Morning calls produced more curses than afternoon or evening calls

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