Twenty Thousand Hertz

The stories behind the world's most recognizable and interesting sounds.
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Twenty Thousand Hertz


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Jul 18, 2017

We often think of the ocean as a quiet, peaceful place, filled with animals that don't make much noise. So when Christophe Haubursin from Vox went diving in the ocean for the first time, he was surprised at how rich the soundscape was: he could hear fish nibbling on coral and squid swimming. But more than anything, he could almost always hear the hum of a boat engine. It's part of a big problem in the ocean right now — ship noise has doubled every decade since 1970, wreaking havoc on marine life. 

This video was made in collaboration with Twenty Thousand Hertz, a podcast that dives deep into all kinds of stories about sound. Everything from "who's the person behind the voice on your phone," to "what do other planets sound like to our ears?" To hear more stories like this, subscribe at

Marine life photographs courtesy of NOAA, STRI Office of Bioinformatics, and Richard Bejarano. is a news website that helps you cut through the noise and understand what's really driving the events in the headlines. Check out Vox to get up to speed on everything from Kurdistan to the Kim Kardashian app. 

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