Sunday, June 13, 2010

Vuvuzelas - The New World Cup 2010 Mascot?

The opening ceremony of the World Cup 2010 and the matches that have been played so far have been supported by a new “menace” – the Vuvuzelas (pronounced voo-voo-ZAY-luh ) – the yellow ear-splitting plastic mouth blown horns. Some say these tuneless horns produce more noise in decibels as compared to a chainsaw or even a metal drum. The noise created by these magical plastic horns was so much that during the opening ceremony, the announcers had to request the spectators to stop blowing the horns many a times – but would a crowd of almost 90,000 equipped with this menace listen – to whom the only mode of participating in the event is the yellow Vuvuzelas.

The liking of this instrument is so great that even the South African goalkeeper complained that the spectators did not blow Vuvuzelas “loud enough” to cheer the South African team during their opening match with Mexico.

The original vuvuzela is a one meter long simple horn, first seen in the Mexico in early 70s. The original instrument was made of tin that found its way into South Africa in the 90s. as has been experienced in the World Cup 2010, these mind blowing horns have been controversial since their introduction. Their extremely high pitched mono frequency shrilling sound can lead to paramagnet noise induced hearing loss. The sound level of the metere-long instrument is measured to be around 131 dB(A) at the mouth of the horn, which reduces to about 113 dB(A) about two metres from its opening. Both levels are extremely dangerous for the unprotected ears. Although, the plastic horns used at the World Cup 2010 are much smaller in size, yet they produce a very high frequency shrill that may cause damage to the ears.

But at tournaments like football matches, where temperatures rise excessively high during the match, who cares – and the spectators blow these at their will and leisure to support their teams.

Read More: Vuvuzela (wikipedia), Proposal to Ban Vuvuzela