I suppose it's an easy way to fill up some space by magazines or internet sites: to compose a list of the worst states or the most annoying states.
The authors, and people they consulted found New York and Massachuetts to be the least worst states. Did their being based in New York have anything to do with it?
According to Gawker, the worst states were Arizona, Alabama, New Jersey, Utah, and Mississippi.
As for the most annoying state, Spy Magazine several years ago reported that Texas was the most annoying state. Florida came in second, New York tenth, and New Jersey was slighted by being named the least annoying of all states. Sorry, I can't give you any rankings of the other 46 -- you'll have to find an old Spy magazine, a tall order in most places, in my opinion. Maybe that information, if known, would have weighed against a state's ranking in the Spy article.
Does this have anything to do with the recent rash of secessions? It might. There probably is widespread sentiment that the Union is pretty okay; but many people would not mind voting a few states out of it, fobbing one or two off on unsuspecting other countries, or hoping for the earthquake to top all others. This feeling probably played a part in at least some of the petitions. For example, it's hard to understand why New Jersey would want to secede; but a number might be tempted by watching Jersey Shore to vote to have New Jersey secede! And take Donald Trump with it!