“You’re on Mute!” Is the Phrase of the Year

Courtesy of the Financial Times, here’s a weird chart to start off our week:

What accounts for this? Corporate earnings calls, as the name implies, have always been calls. That didn’t change because of the COVID-19 pandemic. And yet, the surge in mentions of muting started precisely in April and May, exactly when the pandemic took off in the United States. Was there a sudden switch from phone calls to Zoom calls, and with it a learning curve of how to mute oneself? But if that’s the case, surely people would learn over time and the incidence of being unexpectedly on mute would decline. That hasn’t happened.

I feel like there’s something obvious that I’m missing here. Somebody school me, please.

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This is no time to come up short. It's time to fight like hell, as our namesake would tell us to do, for a democracy where minority rule cannot impose an extreme agenda, where facts matter, and where accountability has a chance at the polls and in the press. If you value our reporting and you can right now, please help us dig out of the $100,000 hole we're starting our new budgeting cycle in with an always-needed and always-appreciated donation today.

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