That stereotype about the American South being more polite than other parts of the country is true.
Or, at least, it’s true for Alabama. According to a recent study by FreshBooks, a Toronto-based accounting software company, Alabama is the second-politest state in the Union.
You may be wondering, what’s the angle? How is an accounting firm equipped to measure politeness?
— The survey’s authors examined a large group of FreshBooks clients, looking at how many businesses begin and end their invoices with “please” and “thank you.”
— 27 percent of business owners in Alabama meet that criterion of politeness, according to the study.
— Oklahoma leads the states, with a 49 percent politeness rating.
— The study is problematic for our stereotypes overall, however, because Tennessee – certainly part of the South – is tied with Utah at the bottom of the list with a 6 percent politeness rating.
— Mississippi is also quite low, with a 7 percent politeness rating.