Dear Nigerians, Stop Yelling on the Phone!

One lesson I have learnt over the years is this: Nigerians are loud people.  That can be both a good and a bad thing.  It is a good thing at a soccer match for example, where they can shout down the fans of the competitor's country.  But, a conference room or a seminar for example, is not a soccer match, and so does not need the same level of noise.

Perhaps, the most common example of Nigerians being Nigerians, is on the phone.  It does not matter if the person on the other end of the line is within the same zipcode, same city, same county or out of the country, the reaction is the same: they yell.  I don't mean just yelling the first "Hello!" Oh no.

If that was the case, I would not need an entire blog post to rant.  No, the yelling continues at the same frequency, pitch or whatever you want to call it from beginning to the end.  You don’t need loudspeakers to follow the conversation.  You can hear everything that is being said from miles away, even if you don’t want to.

Now, I have tried to explain why this continues to occur, despite the "eye lazer" I have given repeat offenders, and these are my suggestions.  Nigerians yell on the phone because:

  1. In their heart of hearts, they don’t believe the phone is powerful enough to convey their message to the person on the other end.  So, they believe that if they yell loud enough, the person on the other side will actually hear them, without the phone.
  2. They actually want people in the surrounding areas to get up-to-date on their personal gist.  Oh yes, it is important for people to know that you are sending Mama $ 200 tomorrow afternoon, and the money is only to be used for her drugs and not the upkeep of other relatives.  No problem.  We all heard you loud and clear.
  3. They have the town-crier mentality.  Remember how town criers used to go from house to house with gongs, making special announcements in the village?  Well, if you don’t remember, at least pretend to.  I just painted the scenario for goodness sakes!  Anyway, I think some people believe that it is their destiny or built into their DNA to be town criers.  It just so happens that many of these 'believers' are Nigerians.
  4. The phone connection is bad and the person on the other end really cannot hear them without yelling:  I assume many people have this at the back of their minds especially when they call home (MTN, Etisalat, Zain … they're all the same).  Sometimes this is the genuine reason.  But how do you explain the same behavior when the person you're talking to is in Michigan and you're in Chicago? I taya!
  5. Some people think they're at the motor park or market, and they need to yell louder than the combination of buses and agbero voices.  If you're at a motor park, I understand.  But most of the people I have observed were not anywhere close to any motor park.  

I'll stop here.  Please, my fellow Nigerians, stop yelling on the phone.  Use the phone like the civilized people I know you are.  Your blood pressure might actually go down a few notches if you comply.  And we won't think any less of you if you speak calmly and softly on the phone.  Unless, of course, you pick your nose in public.  That would be disgusting.  Don't do it. Thank you.

*Image Source

Might be easier to tell them to stop eating rice.


Tell us o...! The one that angers me most is being in the bus and taking a call and they keep shouting like they are in oshodi market. Lol


Oh My goodness.. You are so right about everything..

Whistling Beautiful

In the: Bwa ha ha ha! I just imagined the riots and protests that would erupt on the rice issue. Yeah. Ain't ever gonna happen.

Dayor: Lol ... Abi o! Wait a minute ... You know what? Your comment just inspired another post. *rubs hands together in glee*

Whistling Beautiful: Gee ... Thanks! *grinning* Okay let me be modest and say just 99.99% right :-D

I've given up on this issue, sigh. It's like wired into the nigerian dna or something. It does make the train/bus ride slightly more interesting though....

Vegan Nigerian

Vegan Nigerian: Lol! Yes, it's interesting if it's good gist. If it is bad gist on the other hand, one begins to wish for ears that have an in-built noise canceling filter. Or maybe it's just me ...

LOL! I'm having a good laugh right about now and i'm definitely going to share this. ;-)

Ibimina: Lol! Please do, and I hope they listen to you.

... Wait "do" and "you" rhyme ... I am a rapper! *high five to myself*


I would love to hear your thoughts. Please Share.

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