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We counted how many times Joe Hockey said ‘you know’ in a Neil Mitchell interview

Tom Elliott
Article image for We counted how many times Joe Hockey said ‘you know’ in a Neil Mitchell interview

Former Treasurer Joe Hockey’s interview with Neil Mitchell on Monday piqued Tom Elliott’s interest for a peculiar reason.

The 3AW Drive presenter noticed Mr Hockey continually said the phrase ‘you know’ throughout the 11 minute chat, and wanted to find out exactly how many times he said it.

The answer is 57.

3AW’s resident linguistic expert Kate Burridge shed some light on why phrases such as ‘you know’ are so common, telling Tom Elliott it’s often used to fill the space and build rapport.

“If you listen to (Joe Hockey) ‘you know’ was often accompanied by a number of other words or phrases like ‘I mean’ and ‘well’ and a lot of hesitation stuff, and false starts and pauses,” she said on 3AW Drive.

Ms Burridge also said these “filler” phrases indicate a more honest responses.

“In fact you should probably be a little suspicious of those who don’t have these fillers Tom, because it does suspect they’re not speaking on the fly or off the cuff, they are well rehearsed and they’re trotting out routines.”

Press PLAY to hear more from Kate Burridge below

Photo by Daniel Munoz/Getty Images

Tom Elliott
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