Whistling is a lot of fun, but it’s on the wane. Why so? Well, it’s down to your smartphone.
And no, this is not a joke – it’s as real as controlling your device with your hair (which we reported on earlier).
According to a new poll from YouGov, which was commissioned by the Sunday Times, 70 per cent of people are of the opinion that we whistle far less today than we did 20 to 30 years ago.
As for why, well, a third of respondents said it was down to new technology – smartphones, MP3 players and tablets have replaced whistling.
We either now listen to music or are busy playing with apps or chatting to people via social media.
With reference to the first point, in the past there were hardly any portable music devices. As such, we had to “make music” ourselves. If we weren’t singing, we were whistling.
Chris Cook, a cultural historian at Syracuse University London, noted that because music is now easily accessible via a smartphone, people no longer “need them in their heads”.
Another major reason – over half stated this – is the so-called demise of “working class culture”.
John Lucas, co-author of A Brief History of Whistling, told the newspaper: “The sound of workers whistling as they went to and from the factory or the coal mine used to be common.
“Miners, for example, had whistling choirs on the buses that took them to and from work. Errand lads, delivery boys on their bicycles and the coalman – they’re not there anymore.”