Talk:Five-second rule

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
WikiProject Food and drink (Rated Start-class, Mid-importance)
WikiProject iconThis article is within the scope of WikiProject Food and drink, a collaborative effort to improve the coverage of food and drink related articles on Wikipedia. If you would like to participate, please visit the project page, where you can join the discussion and see a list of open tasks.
Start-Class article Start  This article has been rated as Start-Class on the project's quality scale.
Checklist icon
 Mid  This article has been rated as Mid-importance on the project's importance scale.
WikiWorld logo.JPG Five-second rule was featured in a WikiWorld cartoon:
(click image to the right for full size version.)
Five second wikiworld.jpg

Sources? Bologna?[edit]

Grammar and writing style is poor throughout, but especially in first two paragraphs e.g. "Also, some people think it's pronounced Five-Second "Roll" instead of Five-Second Rule." Sources? [unsigned]

What is 'bologna', other than a city in Italy? Ermoxermox (talk) 09:45, 18 January 2010 (UTC)

I took that sentence out because it was unsourced and kind of silly, but I don't see any other serious problems. Bologna sausage, also known as "baloney" is a common lunch meat. Beeblebrox (talk) 03:55, 19 January 2010 (UTC)

Is the article about a five-second rule or a five-minute rule? In the text, it appears to say minute when it means second - e.g. in the Mythbusters paragraph. Also, if you mean "Bologna sausage" please say "Bologna sausage" - 'bologna' by itself is not understood outside the USA. --dww —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 08:44, 21 March 2010 (UTC)

Under research[edit]

It may shock you to find out that it might be MORE dangerous to eat food that you just dropped on your floor in the kitchen than on a sidewalk." Is it really needed for the word 'more' to be in caps? I feel its not needed at all... [unsigned]

Has any research been carried out on how many people actually get sick from food that has fallen on the floor? Sure, it may pick up bacteria, but that doesn't neccessarily translate to health risk/illness. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 04:07, 5 May 2011 (UTC)
I suspect any research into the number of people who actually get ill from eating 3/5/10 second food wouldn't get past the ethics milestone. It would be a very brave researcher who deliberately gave subjects food poisoning particularly as part of a study in to something we all know is a light hearted urban myth. (talk) —Preceding undated comment added 21:53, 5 May 2011 (UTC).

TV commercial[edit]

I, and probably a lot of other people, first heard of this via a TV commercial where some guy drops a cookie on the kitchen floor and says: "five [or 3] second rule; that cookie's still good." Can't remember what product was being promoted, but it was completely unrelated. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:26, 26 December 2010 (UTC)

Just Wondering[edit]

Was any of the food tested for contamination BEFORE dropping it??? Tiyang (talk) 22:46, 25 May 2011 (UTC)


Surely it is three seconds. This is the way I've always heard of it. I can't find any reliable sources, but both urban dictionary and uncyclopedia agree. Guinness2702 (talk) 13:10, 26 March 2012 (UTC)

Yes, I've also only heard of this as the 3 second rule... The 5 second thing seems to be fairly recent. Kaetemi (talk) 11:24, 22 November 2012 (UTC)

I think the big problem with this article is the fact that it doesn't take in to account who does the dropping and where the dropping is done.

If you drop your food at somebody else's house then the five second rule applies (to suggest otherwise would be to impugn the cleanliness of your host's carpet). If you drop your food in your own house while you have guests then the three second rule applies because (1) You don't want to appear to be bragging about your household cleanliness (2) You don't want to look like a scruffbag. Dropping your guest's food on the floor and retrieving it for them is of course a social faux pas which could see you black-balled by the golf club, reported to child services (whether you have children or not) and asked to return that electric drill you borrowed five years ago and hoped they'd forgotten about.

Dropping your own food in your own house while nobody is watching is governed by a whole different set of scientific principle best summarised as 'Get to it before the dog'. (talk) 17:46, 30 July 2013 (UTC)


What's up with the image? Is there really any need for it? K0R0M0 (talk) 04:21, 11 December 2012 (UTC)

no, there is no "need" for it. But don't you agree it's funny? (talk) 16:48, 17 December 2012 (UTC)


Not one word is said as to the origin of the phrase or how old it is. CFLeon (talk) 19:02, 16 May 2013 (UTC)

Indeed, I just came to make the same point. This article is lacking in a History section. There must be some early published reports of the 5 second rule. OmniArticleEditor (talk) 13:00, 23 September 2013 (UTC)

Doesn't seem like a superstition to me[edit]

A superstition is something actually believed, whether true or not. But my understanding of the 5 second rule is that it is a pretense, for convenience. When invoked, nobody actually believes that the 5 second rule is true, other than perhaps children. Instead, the 5 second rule provides a socially acceptable way of carrying on as if nothing had happened, after some food has fallen onto a dirty surface.

I believe the justification for the 5 second rule would go something like this: Things have dropped before, and been eaten afterward, and nobody gets sick. Therefore, eating things from the floor is safe enough to be tolerated when the alternative is the creation of a lot of new work. I think the "5 second" part is a bit of a joke, really, and that everybody understands that nothing changes after 1 or 5 or 60 seconds. But the invocation of the 5 second rule makes light of the situation, and allows things to return quickly to normal with no fuss.

Note that people would be far less inclined to eat a piece of buttered toast that fell face down -- even for 1 second -- than a piece of unbuttered toast. Why? Wet foods (like butter, icing, jam, etc.) are presumed to pick up too much dust and dirt, whereas dry foods are presumed to pick up far less.

Why am I writing this here? Before changing the article, I'd like to throw out the notion of removing the reference to superstition, since I don't think anyone truly believes the 5 second rule (except children). Instead of a superstition, I'd prefer to refer to it as a piece of cultural humor. But if someone has a better phrase, please suggest it (or just put it in). I'm not married to the phrase, but I would like to divorce the article from "superstition".

Danfreedman (talk) 04:06, 28 July 2013 (UTC)

I agree 100%. The five second rule doesn't count as a superstition because most of the people who invoke it don't actually believe there's a grain of truth to it. Well... None of my friends do. It falls in to the same category as those urban myths you repeat even though you know their not true on the grounds that 'It's not true but it should be' (talk) 18:12, 4 August 2013 (UTC)

External links modified[edit]

Hello fellow Wikipedians,

I have just modified one external link on Five-second rule. Please take a moment to review my edit. If you have any questions, or need the bot to ignore the links, or the page altogether, please visit this simple FaQ for additional information. I made the following changes:

When you have finished reviewing my changes, you may follow the instructions on the template below to fix any issues with the URLs.

As of February 2018, "External links modified" talk page sections are no longer generated or monitored by InternetArchiveBot. No special action is required regarding these talk page notices, other than regular verification using the archive tool instructions below. Editors have permission to delete these "External links modified" talk page sections if they want to de-clutter talk pages, but see the RfC before doing mass systematic removals. This message is updated dynamically through the template {{sourcecheck}} (last update: 15 July 2018).

  • If you have discovered URLs which were erroneously considered dead by the bot, you can report them with this tool.
  • If you found an error with any archives or the URLs themselves, you can fix them with this tool.

Cheers.—InternetArchiveBot (Report bug) 20:18, 9 December 2017 (UTC)


When I first heard of this '5-second rule', I thought it must be a joke because it is so baseless, arbitrary, and un-scholarly (in other word incredibly stupid). I was shocked to find out that even one person takes it seriously. 2600:1700:4CA1:3C80:ED78:EA7D:6EE1:95DA (talk) 22:42, 9 September 2018 (UTC)

Requested move 17 October 2018[edit]

The following is a closed discussion of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on the talk page. Editors desiring to contest the closing decision should consider a move review. No further edits should be made to this section.

The result of the move request was: Not moved. No consensus move. (non-admin closure)Ammarpad (talk) 08:41, 25 October 2018 (UTC)

Five-second ruleFive-second rule (food) – This "rule" is mostly a joke. I highly fail to see how this is the primary topic over Five-second rule (basketball) or the book by Mel Robbins which has coverage from many reliable sources (and isn't a joke): [1] [2] [3] [4] [5]. Five-second rule should be turned into a disambiguation page to list all three of the above.--NØ 18:21, 17 October 2018 (UTC)

  • Oppose. This is a WP:TWODABS situation (the book does not have an article) and page views and a Google search indicate this is the WP:primary topic of the two. Whether it's a joke or not is irrelevant; jokes can still be primary topics. Station1 (talk) 19:37, 17 October 2018 (UTC)
  • "Google search indicate this is the WP:primary topic of the two" Huh? On a google search for "five-second rule", 100% of the results on the first page are about the Mel Robbins book.--NØ 20:08, 17 October 2018 (UTC)
  • But as I said, there is no WP article about the book. The current article is the primary topic between the two that have articles. Station1 (talk) 20:14, 17 October 2018 (UTC)
I’m sorry but I’m not understanding the parade of opposes here with no (or inaccurate) arguments. Google clearly indicates the book as the primary topic. And Wikipedia’s pageview statics of the whole year do not indicate whether the basketball one or the food one is the primary topic. A disambiguation page listing all three (granted that an article about the book would actually have to be created) is clearly the ideal scenario here. Also note that discussions are not closed based on tally, so “oppose”s with no explanation hold no weight.—NØ 21:07, 18 October 2018 (UTC)
" article about the book would actually have to be created" is the key. If you think the book is notable, write an article and wait a few weeks to see if readers agree. You may well have a good case then. But the book can't be a primary topic on Wikipedia unless and until it has an article. Station1 (talk) 02:46, 19 October 2018 (UTC)
  • Oppose. No article about the book... doesn't figure into primary topic decision-making. As to the two remaining actual uses on WP, we have two choices. Either send everyone to the dab page and make them peruse it and select their desired topic as proposed, or keep sending everyone to this article per status quo, be right more than half the time, and require the others to click on the hatnote link to get to their basketball article. So at least half are better off than they would be in the proposed configuration, and the remaining half is no worse off. Let's not make WP worse. --В²C 18:41, 24 October 2018 (UTC)

The above discussion is preserved as an archive of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on this talk page or in a move review. No further edits should be made to this section.


I want to add a image to Five-Second Rule

RobloxFanEditor (talk) 06:32, 16 June 2019 (UTC)