Which U.S. States Curse the Most at Customer Service Representatives?

Frequency and strength of profanity in complaints to 500 top brands varies from state to state.

July 30, 2017 5:00 am
The c-word
The c-word might be going mainstream. (Getty)

If you’re from Virginia, you might be more likely to let loose with a string of obscenities than if you’re from Hawaii.

That’s one takeaway from an analysis of millions of conversations with customer service professionals from 500 brands. It offers insight into which consumers in the United States use profanities the most when dealing with corporate complaint lines. According to the report, Hawaii has the most decorous customers while Virgnia has the most vulgar ones.

According to Quartz, the report used sentiment analysis from 35 million transcripts of chats with customers of companies like Adobe, Citibank, HSBC, and The Home Depot. LivePerson, which provides live chat technology for customer service representatives, tallied the words it considered to be “polite” or a “curse.”

Customers in Virginia are more likely to use “soft” curses, polite replacements for vulgar words, like “shoot” or “shucks.” Meanwhile, Iowa is more prone to use “hard” curses, or true profanities.

In general, Americans used “soft” curse more frequently than “hard” ones. “Stupid,” “shoot,” and “goodness” were the three used most often. “Sh-t” and “f-ck” rounded out the top five.

The LivePerson analysis found men cursed 16.5 percent more frequently than women in conversations with customer service professionals, Quartz reports. Perhaps unsurprsingly, people are more polite when their name was associated with comments than when they were anonymous.

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