Buzz of the Vuvuzela distracts Israeli World Cup viewers

Trumpet with sound that resembles a shofar mixed with the call of an elephant likely to stay.

June 14, 2010 11:59
1 minute read.
Fans play their vuvuzelas prior to the World Cup g

Vuvuzela 311 AP. (photo credit: ASSOCIATED PRESS)


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Accompanied by painted faces, a blur of yellow, and flags of different nationalities being waved at the World Cup is a sound that resembles a shofar mixed with the call of an elephant: the vuvuzela.

The South African plastic noisemaker in the shape of a long, thin, trumpet is overpowering the commentary at the World Cup and causing mayhem for fans across the world.

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“I feel like I can’t understand or cannot focus on the game because it sounds like a bees nest,” said Sassie Efrati, head of the sports department for the Israel Broadcast Authority, who is attending the games in South Africa.

He said the IBA has received hundreds of complaints about the blasting noise.

Efrati said that they are doing their best to minimize the sounds on the Channel One broadcasts by making the voices in the commentary louder.

The vuvuzela, according to, was originally used to beckon people for gatherings, and symbolizes hope and unity. Efrati said the vuvuzela tradition is part of the South African culture and they would not give up their ritual.

“We have to learn to live with it.

I don’t believe they will stop the audience,” said Efrati.

Israelis are not the only fans complaining about the noise of the vuvuzela.

Many of the thousands of supporters in South Africa as well as some players have said it has distracted from the games themselves.

World Cup organizing committee chairman Danny Jordaan told the BBC that a ban would only be introduced if there were “grounds to do so.”

“We have had some broadcasters and individuals [complaining] and it is something we are evaluating on an ongoing basis,” he said.

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