Why are deaf people direct?

Charlie Swinbourne is a deaf filmmaker and journalist and is the creator of the UK’s independently-run deaf news and deaf blogs site, The Limping Chicken.

An informative site for news – it is also well-known for well-written and interesting articles about the deaf community and deaf culture.

Charlie wrote an article back on 10 July 2013 entitled The 10 annoying habits of deaf people.
He gathered his list of 10 from his readers – identifying the 10 annoying habits of deaf people!

One of the things people often wonder is why deaf people are more direct than hearing people, and it must really be a thing as it made it to number 3 of Charlie’s top 10!


Here is an excerpt from his article:



Here are some ideas of why this could be:

  1. If a deaf person is communicating a message to a hearing person – it is more important to get to the point clearly and succinctly.  This can sometimes mean that messages are short and quick and may come across as direct.
  2. BSL grammar, in its simplest form, is topic-comment. Instead of saying, “oh, I think the chips were too salty”, you would simply sign “, chips, salt too much”.
  3. The deaf person often has better visual awareness than hearing people and may point out things that hearing people would not notice.