ChatterBlocker plays soft sounds designed to reduce distraction from nearby conversations. The website claims that as well as blocking distraction from talking it can also be useful for:
- Masking highway & airplane noise, etc.
- Tinnitus (ringing ears)
- Hyperacousis (sound sensitivity)
- Asperger syndrome (with sound sensitivity)
The website describes how it works:
ChatterBlocker does not use noise cancellation; instead, it blurs recognizable speech with a soothing blend of nature sounds, music and background chatter. Intelligible speech is often the most distracting sound in the workplace. ChatterBlocker lowers the intelligibility and reduces the distraction.
I have hyperacousis but I found that the ChatterBlocker noises were themselves distracting, on balance it made things worse rather than better for me. I have talked to others with similar problems though and some of them found that the program was helpful to them. Everybody is different - download the demo program and see if it's for you. It has been suggested to me that it works best when used with headphones and when the user adjusts it to the lowest volume possible.
I think that ChatterBlocker could also be useful for anybody who has trouble concentrating or is easily distracted for other reasons, such as those with attention deficit disorder or hyperactivity (ADD/ADHD), those with head injury (ABI), and those with disorders like cerebral palsy which makes them inclined to startle easily.
- Ricky Buchanan