Speech Privacy is a defined premise and, according to ASTM standards, you can measure Speech Privacy in two ways that related to sound masking technology:
- Articulation Index (AI), measures how intelligible speech is
- Privacy Index (PI), measures the unintelligibly of speech
- They are both saying the same thing, just rearranging the words.
The tools to improve the Privacy Index score are commonly referred to as the ABC’s:
- A – Absorb sound through wall or furniture panels, or high NRC-rated ceiling tiles
- B – Block sound through wall construction
- C – Cover up by utilizing a high-quality sound masking technology
Many facilities focus on the A and B of speech privacy, and these two elements along will not achieve a decent Privacy Index score.
The C of the ABC’s is based on an introduction of background noise at a low level to the environment. Thus, intruding speech and noises are less intelligible. “White noise” is a widely used term referring to speech privacy or sound masking systems.
Sound masking technology was the realization by engineers and scientists that oral privacy is actually a matter of making speech unintelligible. In simpler terms, if each of us can’t understand what the other is saying, we have established oral privacy- even if we can still see and to some extent hear each other.
Where is the proper placement to achieve this? Answer- you mask the area where the speech is heard, not where it is spoken. This is important for the two reasons listed below:
Speech privacy is key when trying to keep researcher focused, less stressed, error-free or protecting their work. With a properly installed speech privacy system, workers can stay focused, safeguard their work and their conversations.