Research shows that people prefer to be addressed in their right ear as they will find it easier to process the information and are therefore more likely to perform a task. Known as the "right ear advantage", scientists believe it is because information received through the right ear is processed by the left hand side of the brain which is more logical and better at deciphering verbal information than the right side of the brain. The researchers looked at how people listen in natural situations and seeing how they respond. The team led by Dr Luca Tommasi and Daniele Marzoli from the University of Chieti in central Italy, observed behaviour of hundreds of people in three nightclubs across the city. They intentionally addressed 176 people in either their right or their left ear when asking for a cigarette. They obtained significantly more cigarettes when they made their request in a person's right ear compared with their left. The authors' results confirm a "right ear advantage" for verbal communication and the increased willingness to carry out a request when it is asked into the right ear. Their findings were just published online in Springer's journal Naturwissenschaften.