The Perception of Emotions in Noisified Nonsense Speech

Emilia Parada-Cabaleiro, Alice Baird, Anton Batliner, Nicholas Cummins, Simone Hantke, Björn Schuller


Noise pollution is part of our daily life, affecting millions of people, particularly those living in urban environments. Noise alters our perception and decreases our ability to understand others. Considering this, speech perception in background noise has been extensively studied, showing that especially white noise can damage listener perception. However, the perception of emotions in noisified speech has not been explored with as much depth. In the present study, we use artificial background noise conditions, by applying noise to a subset of the GEMEP corpus (emotions expressed in nonsense speech). Noises were at varying intensities and ‘colours’; white, pink, and brownian. The categorical and dimensional perceptual test was completed by 26 listeners. The results indicate that background noise conditions influence the perception of emotion in speech — pink noise most, brownian least. Worsened perception invokes higher confusion, especially with sadness, an emotion with less pronounced prosodic characteristics. Yet, all this does not lead to a break-down of the ‘cognitive-emotional space’ in a Non-metric MultiDimensional Scaling representation. The gender of speakers and the cultural background of listeners do not seem to play a role.


 DOI: 10.21437/Interspeech.2017-104

Cite as: Parada-Cabaleiro, E., Baird, A., Batliner, A., Cummins, N., Hantke, S., Schuller, B. (2017) The Perception of Emotions in Noisified Nonsense Speech. Proc. Interspeech 2017, 3246-3250, DOI: 10.21437/Interspeech.2017-104.


@inproceedings{Parada-Cabaleiro2017,
  author={Emilia Parada-Cabaleiro and Alice Baird and Anton Batliner and Nicholas Cummins and Simone Hantke and Björn Schuller},
  title={The Perception of Emotions in Noisified Nonsense Speech},
  year=2017,
  booktitle={Proc. Interspeech 2017},
  pages={3246--3250},
  doi={10.21437/Interspeech.2017-104},
  url={http://dx.doi.org/10.21437/Interspeech.2017-104}
}