"Women have x words to speak everyday, whereas men have y words to speak everyday. Where x is greater than y by a factor greater than 1, and is often in the area of 4 or 5. (eg: x = 4y)"
People have long believed that women have more words to speak in a day than a man does, so after a day of work, women still have more words they have to say, while her husband has met his quota, and then some. She talks into the evening, and he stays relatively quiet.
Not so, according to Today's article. That's a myth with no scientific backing. Studies put the sexes at the same amount of words.
The article doesn't go into the details of any of the studies so I can only go by what the article says. The article seems to say that the amount of words that were spoken was what was measured. I don't think the old saying isn't really about how much men and women speak, but rather, how much they feel they have to speak. There's a difference.
I know, for myself, that I have a certain amount of socializing have to do in a certain amount of time. And with socializing comes talking. There are times, like during exams, or social dry spells (like when I was doing chemistry), when I hardly see any friends. I work mostly alone. I eat lunch alone most of the time, and after a while I need to socialize, darn it! I need to get out and talk!
On the other side of the coin, if I socialize too much than I no longer enjoy it, and I find myself to be listless, apathetic, withdrawn, and just waiting to go home and get away from it all.
So it seems I have a certain range of hours per week that I need to socialize. I'll wager most people have this too; a certain amount of socializing and talking they need to do. It's probably different for most people. Some, those we know as social butterflies, need lots. Loners need little. Some people who can get by on little, but still do well with lots of socializing simply have a large range of optimal socializing time.
And that's all I have to say about that.
UPDATE: the original article seems to be gone, but here's a more recent article on the Sex Differences in Talkativeness.