What is the Chinese Whispers game?


Chinese Whispers is a game played in groups. A phrase of varying length is passed from one participant to another along a chain of players at a volume only audible to the participant immediately receiving the message. The objective is to hear whether or not the phrase remains the same at the end of the chain. Phrases can be altered intentionally or by mistake.

To play Chinese Whispers, a group of four or more people is optimal. In a typical game, players sit in a circle and pass the phrase either to the left or to the right, whispering in the ear of the receiving player, so the other players can't hear it. The idea behind the game is that each participant only hears a phrase once, and the only source they hear it from is the player acting before them. This means the phrase can be altered by anyone who chooses to alter it or by anyone who mishears it.

The largest game of Chinese Whispers, according to the Guinness Book of World Records, involved 1,330 participants and was conducted at The Emirates Stadium in London in 2008. The game took over 2 hours to complete. The original phrase was, "Together we can make a world of difference," while the final phrase was simply "Haaaaa!"

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