In terms of politeness, apparently loud is the most rude. I dunno though. I think loud is usually funny (which the dug-up study) also shows. I’ve been on planes and buses where dudes are ripping silent deadlies and it’s really noxious and infuriating. One’s own farts are always somehow interesting, but others are plain noxious. I read this story via Andrew Sullivan. His comments were pretty hil:
Man, on the plane back from Los Angeles, the dude next to me (or someone close) was releasing silent killers for a full hour. I think I prefer the loud ones. Laughter helps alleviate the pong. Being slowly enveloped by someone else’s gas, and being immobile, well … that’s marriage, not air travel. (Toward A Social Psychology Of Flatulence)
The video above also highlights another aspect of fraternal flatulence – farting within relationships. ie, when are you comfortable enough to fart under the sheets. I was once on a long car ride with a girl and let loose a few silent and non-lethals. I thought I was getting away with it but she was just being nice. I guess that was nice. WTF are you going to say anyways.