The typical Brit has their nose in their neighbour’s business.
Research confirms that 80 percent of the British population -eight out of ten home owners- admit to spying on their neighbours.
Three traditional methods Brits use to snoop are highlighted in order of preference:
Summer time particularly is the period where it is easiest to catch a next-door neighbour glancing over the fence for a sneaky check-up.
Men are the most curious, with 72 percent confessing that they spy on attractive neighbours. A further 63 percent admitted to hiding behind curtains to watch neighbours wearing sexy clothing.
On the other hand, British women prefer gossiping. In fact, 67 percent of them confirmed that they regularly gossip about the people living in the neighbourhood.
However, this is not to say that women do not enjoy sneaky peeks at male neighbours, with approximately 23 percent of women doing so.
When Brits own property and want to find out the value of his or her local housing market, they are known to monitor the value of their neighbour’s homes online.
This regular tracking is most applied in London and Reading, whereas the least ‘knowsey’ or ‘nosey’ are Liverpool and Hull.
“I am going to tell you something that nobody knows, but you have to promise that you wont tell anyone.”
Is this gossiping? In a sense yes it is, but the origin and the meaning of the word have a slightly different slant.
The English word ‘gossip’ derives from the Old English godsibb, a term used for a godparent. Later on, the word ‘gossip’, was applied to a close friend, especially female one, which then developed into an idea of a person who enjoys idle talk.
Gossiping is a vital element of daily survival for a Brit: it can constitute up to 80 percent of typical conversation, according to research conducted by the Daily Mail.
But, according to this same study, British men are more likely to tittle-tattle than women.
Men, more than women are found guilty of spreading rumours. About 55 percent of men admit to gossiping at work compared with 46 percent of women.
The main topics tackled and gossiped by men are “the sexiest girl at work, promotions, salaries, and finally their best friend's conquest.”
Main topics for women include family feuds, old school friends, fashion errors and neighbours.
So when you’re around British men it is advisable to keep an eye out, or better to keep your mouth closed and ears pricked.
Section image: Flickr/Kamyar Adl