Psychology of Media & Technology
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How augmented reality builds bridge between games and children's books

How augmented reality builds bridge between games and children's books | Psychology of Media & Technology | Scoop.it
Two years ago, Sony's PlayStation 3 "game" Wonderbook began a trend that redefines both games and books for the 21st century
Dr. Pamela Rutledge's insight:

We spend so much time thinking about technology, especially augmented reality, with our serious hats on.  We forget that technology can create new playgrounds.  Play is the best way to learn things, especially things about ourselves.

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Psychology of Media & Technology
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As social media mourns Lahore blast victims, some criticize Western bias | World | DW.COM | 29.03.2016

As social media mourns Lahore blast victims, some criticize Western bias | World | DW.COM | 29.03.2016 | Psychology of Media & Technology | Scoop.it
The terrorist attack in Pakistan has sparked anger on social media – not all of it aimed at the attackers. For many, the relative lack of attention paid on Twitter and Facebook illustrates Western double standards.
Dr. Pamela Rutledge's insight:

Bias is not overcome by pointing fingers.  Bias occurs naturally as part of the biological imperative of survival.  It comes from the innate tendency to feel safer and more connected to the things we know and understand.  A solution to bias is to create opportunities to get to know the human side of other people so that we look past nationality and religion and are able to see them as we see ourselves: parents, mothers, brothers, sisters, and children. 

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In fight between Apple and the government, whom do you trust?

In fight between Apple and the government, whom do you trust? | Psychology of Media & Technology | Scoop.it
On the day Apple announced it would fight a federal court order to build a master key that could grant access to data held on iPhones, dozens of customers flocked to the company’s store downtown. Nearly half of Americans polled recently support Apple’s decision to resist the government’s demand to unlock the iPhone of San Bernardino terror suspect Syed Rizwan Farook, according to a national online survey by Reuters and Ipsos. The case between Apple and the federal government began when a California federal magistrate judge ordered the company on Feb. 16 to disable security functions on Farook’s iPhone that would lock out federal investigators after 10 unsuccessful attempts to guess the suspected gunman’s pass code. Apple CEO Tim Cook refused, saying the case would require the company to create a “backdoor” into the iPhone that could have sweeping implications for security and set a precedent for future government requests to demand greater access to tech companies’ data. Earlier this month, about 40 companies, 32 law professors and several dozen nonprofits and individuals — including the husband of one of the San Bernardino attack victims — filed briefs in support of Apple. The debate between Apple and the FBI has been painted by both sides as a stand-in for the fundamental struggle between national security and civil liberties. On Thursday, federal prosecutors filed a motion that said, “Apple’s rhetoric is not only false, but also corrosive of the very institutions that are best able to safeguard our liberty and our rights.” [...] studies show many Americans simply don’t trust the federal government to keep their information safe. Apple’s design of an operating system that, the company claims, even Apple itself cannot crack was a direct response to consumer fears of surveillance, experts said. Yochai Benkler, a law professor and director of the Berkman Center for Internet and Society at Harvard University, wrote that Apple’s ethic essentially said, You don’t have to trust us; you don’t have to trust the democratic process of our government. Most Americans do not want the government to have access to their phone, communications and Internet activity — even in the name of stopping terror attacks, the Reuters/Iposos poll found. According to Edelman’s annual Trust Barometer study, which measures public confidence in entities such as governments, corporations and the media, most people’s levels of trust haven’t budged since the recent recession. Apple supporters will insist the company is in the right whether they win or the government ultimately prevails and forces the tech giant to turn over the keys to Farook’s iPhone data. A crowd of about 20 people gathered in front of the store and listened as speakers extolled the virtues of Apple’s legal battle with the government.
Dr. Pamela Rutledge's insight:

All the hype over "big data" combined with the looming threat of terrorism and the inroads into personal rights with the Patriot Act have created a landscape of fear.  The question is, who do you fear most?  The current election season is making the government process seem pretty, well, dysfunctional if not downright dangerous. That makes the serenity of an Apple store seem like a temple to the individual.  Beliefs are just that, beliefs.  The facts don't matter.  People tell themselves a story and if it feels right (what Jerome Bruner, my fav cognitive psychologist, calls verisimilitude), then it is right.  A story about Apple protecting your data is a much easier one to tell than that the government isn't going to violate your rights.  I mean, seriously, who believes they are just going to hack into a phone this one time?  I'm not saying which side is right, mind you, I'm just pointing out that Apple has a serious leg up on this narrative space!

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How Generation Z is changing the tech world

How Generation Z is changing the tech world | Psychology of Media & Technology | Scoop.it
Sorry, millennials, you're already obsolete - a younger generation is now setting the pace in social media
Dr. Pamela Rutledge's insight:

As soon as we're able to look at what technology CAN do instead of ruminating over its shortcomings and dangers, we will have a completely different understanding of how to maximize its potential as well as understand and predict generational shifts in consumer behaviors.

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Community Week: When Selfies Kill // Theme Week // BTRread

It sounds like a joke, but selfies are becoming an increasingly serious cause of death. BTRtoday takes a look into the motives behind the dangerous social media habit.
Dr. Pamela Rutledge's insight:

The cause isn't selfies per say.  It's inattention.  The number of "selfie deaths" is very, very small in the world of accidental deaths. Being aware of our cranial operating systems, such as attention or desire to connect socially, helps to offset situations where our instinctive predispositions might put us in harms way.  It is a small piece of a larger issue:  directing our attention away from the physical world to enter a psychological one.  Selfies make a sexy headine, but it's among many circumstances that are equally distracting because we're totally focused on one thing to the exclusion of others.  The combination of social connection with hyper-focusing in a brain that excels at imagination makes engaging in social tools very compelling.  

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Stay Happy On Social Media: Share And Scroll With Purpose

Stay Happy On Social Media: Share And Scroll With Purpose | Psychology of Media & Technology | Scoop.it
To keep your scroll under control, Beauty for a Purpose consulted the experts on six steps to stay positive and post social media updates with grace.
Dr. Pamela Rutledge's insight:

Don't buy into the myth that social media is the path to mental illness, depression or overwhelming envy.  It is just part of our social world.  We are all imperfect and different.  That's part of the beauty of people. That doesn't mean we don't aspire to be our best selves.  From a positive psychology perspective, practicing our best selves not only generates positive emotions, it helps us visualize the path to our goals.  If you start looking at social media posts as people's goals rather than bragging, you will have more appreciation for them and yourself.  If you find other people's post annoying, reclaim  your power: unfriend, unfollow or log-off.  If you wouldn't hang out with them offline, so why do you torment yourself with toxic friends on Instagram or Facebook.  Pro user tip: evaluate your own posts.  Are you guilty of the same kind of posts that you don't like from other people?  


Avon calls this #beautyforapurpose, but we all know (thanks, Grandma!) that beauty is only skin deep.  Positive psychology tells us that finding purpose and meaning in life is the best path to self-esteem and satisfaction with life.  So try #livingforapurpose.  Thanks @avon for posting the tips.  As Eleanor Roosevelt supposedly said, no one can make you feel bad without your help.

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Future of #VR Content poll & AR/VR headsets may not be required by 2030: IEEE survey | Digit.in

Future of #VR Content poll & AR/VR headsets may not be required by 2030: IEEE survey | Digit.in | Psychology of Media & Technology | Scoop.it
More than half the participants surveyed by IEEE during CES 2016 believe that by 2030, AR/VR technology will reach a point where headsets will not be needed

Via Gary Hayes
Dr. Pamela Rutledge's insight:

From Todd Richard in the article: VR will be successful when developers figure out how to "stabilize" the relationship between digital's 0s and 1s and analogue (real time) experience.  The binding agent is story.  

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Gary Hayes's curator insight, January 26, 5:04 PM

Quote "

Participants were also asked to rank the first place they would visit using virtual reality. 30% said that they would visit the Moon, Mars or outer space first, while 19% said that they would rather travel through time by viewing a different time period. Viewing a sporting event came at 18% followed by popular cities, and extreme remote locations at 16% and 11% respectively. 

In addition, 58% of the participants believed that the US will be the first to reach mass adoption of AR/VR technology. The US was followed by Japan and China at 21% and 12% respectively. Brazil, India and the UK were also considered, but made up only a small percentage of the results. "

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A psychologist explains why Victoria’s Secret is killing it on Instagram

A psychologist explains why Victoria’s Secret is killing it on Instagram | Psychology of Media & Technology | Scoop.it
It's not just about sex appeal.
Dr. Pamela Rutledge's insight:

Victoria's Secret is a master class in how to elevate a brand and reconstruct social meaning.  

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The Digital Rocking Chair's curator insight, November 20, 2015 11:50 PM


Megan Willett:  "Of course sex appeal has something to do with it, but there are plenty of sexy Instagram accounts that don't have nearly as many followers.  So how did Victoria's Secret get so popular?"

Digital Communication Students's curator insight, November 23, 2015 3:19 AM

The psychology of media explains us the reasons why the VS Instagram account is one of the most popular on the Internet. It has really as much followers as the nike account has. Nevertheless, the reasons why are understandable. 

António Maneira's curator insight, December 5, 2015 11:22 AM
Social media meets fashion!
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A psychologist explains how to organize your computer desktop for optimal productivity

A psychologist explains how to organize your computer desktop for optimal productivity | Psychology of Media & Technology | Scoop.it
If your desktop wallpaper is no longer visible, we're judging you.
Dr. Pamela Rutledge's insight:

It's easy to forget or overlook our cognitive and perceptive limitations and predispositions when it comes to productivity.  Not to mention the need to organize the pencil drawer.  Physician, heal thyself!

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Baby News For YouTube Couple Accused of Faking Miscarriage

Baby News For YouTube Couple Accused of Faking Miscarriage | Psychology of Media & Technology | Scoop.it
Just two months ago, YouTube vloggers Sam and Nia, a married couple in Terrell, Texas, went viral when Sam surprised Nia with her own pregnancy by secretly testing the urine she’d left in their toilet. Sam captured the stunt in a YouTube video that garnered more than 15 million views. Then, three days
Dr. Pamela Rutledge's insight:

"Fake it 'til you make it" may be a good strategy for getting over anxiety before a meeting, but it's NOT a good strategy when you're selling authenticity on YouTube.  The Internet is powerful--it can propel an unknown with thousands of viewers, but with celebrity comes scrutiny. Those same eyes will be looking through a magnifying lens.  Social media relationships operate with the same rules as offline ones.  They are social contracts that thrive on honesty and are destroyed by deceit. 

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Waiting on an email? Why it takes some people SO long to respond

Waiting on an email? Why it takes some people SO long to respond | Psychology of Media & Technology | Scoop.it
What's the best time to send an email? And why does it seem like it takes forever for someone to respond? A recent study finds that email response time varies greatly by age.
Dr. Pamela Rutledge's insight:

What we do doesn't explain the "why."  Before we make rash value judgments about what is "best" and what constitutes some aberrant or deficit behavior, take a deep breath.  Email length and response time are influenced by context, ability to prioritize, response need, expectations within relationships, mental models and filtering styles.  Just sayin'   This is a great study to begin the next level of inquiry about the 'why' so we can get to the 'so what.'   #mediapsych 

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The power of selfie marketing (single page view) - iMediaConnection.com

The power of selfie marketing (single page view) - iMediaConnection.com | Psychology of Media & Technology | Scoop.it
Dr. Pamela Rutledge's insight:

Selfies are a way to create immediate stakeholders.  WAAY back in 2013 (doesn't that seem like eons ago from a social media perspective?), I published Branding with Selfies on Psychology Today arguing for the power of integrating selfies into marketing and branding strategies. I like how invited participation extends our concept of the "selfie" from its early technophobic labels of "narcissistic attention seekers with low self esteem who need a life"  (Nevermind that some of those things are mutually exclusive) and shifts our vision to how we capture personal experience.  As an advocate for selfies as mindfulness and gratitude tools,  I love to see mental models busted open.


As John Bohan's article reiterates, selfies are the ultimate WOM.  They trigger all kinds of social influence--social proof and social validation--practically screaming "We all like this, so you should too!"  It's fun to see the different approaches to selfie-imagery and gives psychologists a whole new realm to analyze for impact and meaning. #mediapsychology.

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The Digital Rocking Chair's curator insight, October 18, 2015 2:33 PM


John Bohan:  "From Pope Francis to Darth Vader, from Obama to Kim Kardashian, everyone seems to be taking selfies" ...

Kristin Russell's curator insight, December 10, 2015 10:18 AM

This article talks about the power of a selfie. Selfies are so well know today that they are a great way for marketers to get involved with social media. For example, by saying send a selfie into our website and the best selfie could win money allows the viewer to do something common in their lives and connect with the business at the same time. Selfies are great because they are evidence that someone is actually where they say they are.

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Home

Home | Psychology of Media & Technology | Scoop.it
Revolutionalizing the way we're seen in the meadow, through our relationsheeps
Dr. Pamela Rutledge's insight:

The Sheeple parody website is hilarious and is a cautionary tale on several levels: 1) everyone wants their message to go viral.  Viral is not equal to positive.  Viral just means LOTS of people here about it, so be careful what you wish for.  2) Sheeple not only rhymes with Peeple, but it has an implicit message in how we people respond to trends.  Bad "ratings" can do irreparable psychological and personal damage to others because people are, well, like sheep.  They follow the crowd because our brains are lazy and we assume that the opinions of others actually imply validity or "truth".  It takes cognitive effort to think for yourselves and most of us are too busy to think through everything.  The value (or danger) in recommender programs and curation tools is that they short circuit the judgment process. 3) there were no psychologists on the development team. but technology is about facilitating human goals and needs  I could have told them at the back of the napkin stage about the human behavior issues in their plan.  A good designer/developer designs for the audience.  That means thinking through who the consumers are and what they want, not just what you, the developer, thinks or wants. (Remember Kodak and film cameras?)  Sheep don't traditionally wear blinders, but the whole point of consumer-centric design is to create a usable and valuable experience.  Self-focused thinking narrow one's ability to anticipate, like a chess game, the unintended as well an intended consequences. 4) A half-baked idea ends up being cud for others and is chewed beyond recognition--parody being one of the higher art forms.

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Why Facebook hoaxes fool so many people, according to science

Why Facebook hoaxes fool so many people, according to science | Psychology of Media & Technology | Scoop.it
The science behind why smart people fall for dumb social media hoaxes
Dr. Pamela Rutledge's insight:

Hoaxes are cyber-bullying.  People are hard wired to respond to fear. The hoax message operates on several levels--the fear of change in a social contract---being charged by Facebook is a trust violation of our understanding of their social contract with us; the fear of our vulnerability if our information were shared; and the general fear that we can't control our environment and protect ourselves. The hoaxes travel across networks, shared because by sharing we feel an increased sense of control by taking action, even if it is just to "sound the alarm."  We also feel less afraid if we are not alone in any situation.  Sharing and seeing others' responses normalizes our own emotions and experience.  Sharing is also the only way to get feedback that we are, we hope, wrong.  The best news is that it is, in fact, a hoax.  The downside for Facebook is that these types of hoaxes leave us feeling a bit manipulated and emotionally abused that can't help but be associated with the social network--even if they have nothing to do with it.

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Reality Check: Virtual reality isn't a real market. Yet | ZDNet

Reality Check: Virtual reality isn't a real market. Yet | ZDNet | Psychology of Media & Technology | Scoop.it
The reality? The vast majority of consumers aren't there yet, don't know or care about VR, and won't know or care in 2016 unless they are hardcore gamers. And only a few forward-looking enterprises -digital predators - are experimenting with VR in effective ways today.

Via Gary Hayes
Dr. Pamela Rutledge's insight:

Until developers can identify and DESIGN FOR the fundamental psychological goals (social connection, mastery and control) that drive the value proposition for most consumers, VR will be relegated to niche markets, such as hardcore gamers.  VR developers face both physical and psychological challenges in figuring out the magic ingredients that can make this happen.  They need #mediapsych to understand the cognitive and instinctive (neuro) human responses to media experience--the multi-levels of 'why' behind the technology.

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Gary Hayes's curator insight, March 18, 9:27 PM
Quote "The reality? The vast majority of consumers aren't there yet, don't know or care about VR, and won't know or care in 2016 unless they are hardcore gamers. And only a few forward-looking enterprises -digital predators - are experimenting with VR in effective ways today."
ESTRELLA LOOR's curator insight, March 19, 4:34 PM

Until developers can identify and DESIGN FOR the fundamental psychological goals (social connection, mastery and control) that drive the value proposition for most consumers, VR will be relegated to niche markets, such as hardcore gamers.  VR developers face both physical and psychological challenges in figuring out the magic ingredients that can make this happen.  They need #mediapsych to understand the cognitive and instinctive (neuro) human responses to media experience--the multi-levels of 'why' behind the technology.

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3 Reasons Why Millennials Want Long Form Storytelling Over 'Snackable' Content - Forbes

3 Reasons Why Millennials Want Long Form Storytelling Over 'Snackable' Content - Forbes | Psychology of Media & Technology | Scoop.it
There's an emerging case that long-form, high quality content might be the best way to build a millennial audience.
Dr. Pamela Rutledge's insight:

It's a mistake to make sweeping statements about what a generation (especially one that spans to many developmental milestones) wants.  What do Millennials want?  Meaning.  Just like everybody else.  Just because they grew up digital, doesn't mean they don't want meaningful engagement in a good story.  

 

We're past the shiny penny stage of many technologies (except VR, we're just entering the shiny penny stage of that one).  People of all ages are figuring out what works for them and and what doesn't.  It just so happens that the Millennials are the most visible.  They are also getting older.  We can't help get a little more serious as we get older.  

 

For most of the Millennials, the prefrontal cortex has grown in and they have some sense of the future, their limitations and are just getting a peak at their mortality.  Some of them are having kids, paying bills and trying to figure out how you make it to soccer on time.  Twitter has news. Facebook has connection.  Snapchat is fun.  Stories take you for a journey into another world and into yourself simultaneously.  Snackable media is great when you're looking to apply what you've found.  Long form media is experiential at multiple levels.

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Soraia Ferreira's curator insight, March 15, 11:14 AM

It's a mistake to make sweeping statements about what a generation (especially one that spans to many developmental milestones) wants.  What do Millennials want?  Meaning.  Just like everybody else.  Just because they grew up digital, doesn't mean they don't want meaningful engagement in a good story.  

 

We're past the shiny penny stage of many technologies (except VR, we're just entering the shiny penny stage of that one).  People of all ages are figuring out what works for them and and what doesn't.  It just so happens that the Millennials are the most visible.  They are also getting older.  We can't help get a little more serious as we get older.  

 

For most of the Millennials, the prefrontal cortex has grown in and they have some sense of the future, their limitations and are just getting a peak at their mortality.  Some of them are having kids, paying bills and trying to figure out how you make it to soccer on time.  Twitter has news. Facebook has connection.  Snapchat is fun.  Stories take you for a journey into another world and into yourself simultaneously.  Snackable media is great when you're looking to apply what you've found.  Long form media is experiential at multiple levels.

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10 Times When It's Okay To Take A Man Selfie

10 Times When It's Okay To Take A Man Selfie | Psychology of Media & Technology | Scoop.it
Dr. Pamela Rutledge's insight:

What more is there to say? 

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Netflix binge watching sounds bad but feels good

Netflix binge watching sounds bad but feels good | Psychology of Media & Technology | Scoop.it
I once binge-watched eight episodes of Breaking Bad in one sitting - I was breathless, drugged, insatiable. One was never enough – during my entire five-season meth binge over a month, nothing got done and I was lost when the series ended.
Dr. Pamela Rutledge's insight:

We're always so quick to blame technology.  It reminds me of the very funny Flip Wilson comedy routines from the 1970s "The devil made me do it."  If we blame technology, it's not our fault.  So, the devil is back and it's called "binge watching."  This is where understanding a little about research is helpful.   Reported here under the "bad" of catching up on multiple episodes of your favorite TV show: researchers say binge-watching is "related to" obesity and depression. "Related" is a correlation - that's a relationship not a cause.  In other words, it's equally likely that someone who is depressed and obese will choose to watch several consecutive hours of TV. Nevertheless, it is true that too much inactivity of any kind is related to weight gain.  You could be sitting their knitting as well as watching House of Cards.  It's your remote. Everything is a trade-off--one that's yours to make.

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The age of on-demand here? NBC try to embarrass Netflix but the opposite ensues

The age of on-demand here? NBC try to embarrass Netflix but the opposite ensues | Psychology of Media & Technology | Scoop.it
The network dropped numbers for OITNB, Jessica Jones, Master of None...

Via Gary Hayes
Dr. Pamela Rutledge's insight:

Two lessons here: 1) When a big guy takes on a little guy, the result gives the little guy more power.  Numbers don't matter. 2) Calling attention to these "secret numbers" creates unearned media for Netflix.  (Nice job, NBC) and 3) Being on the offensive when you're the "big guy" usually looks just that, offensive.

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Gary Hayes's curator insight, January 18, 8:28 AM

Quote "Among Symphony's data conclusions: Jessica Jones averaged about 4.8 million views an episode, Master of None about 3.9 million, and Narcos about 3.2 million. Orange Is the New Black, meanwhile, supposedly averaged just 644,000 viewers for its third season, though the Symphony measurement occurred many months after that third season launched in June. (Netflix has previously said Orange is its most watched show.)"

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We must mind our language when it comes to evil fanatics - BelfastTelegraph.co.uk

We must mind our language when it comes to evil fanatics - BelfastTelegraph.co.uk | Psychology of Media & Technology | Scoop.it
Readers have inquired about the use of language in reports of the horrific massacres in Paris. Not particularly just in the Belfast Telegraph, but in the media generally.
Dr. Pamela Rutledge's insight:

#MediaPsychology addresses the meaning of words, symbols and platforms, in other words, media experience.  It's a shame that it takes "evil fanatics" to underscore the importance of #mediapsych.   Psychology applied to media experience is equally essential in developing effective media and technology for positive goals, such as education, organizational communication, social change, advocacy, user experience, design, brand messaging and entertainment.  As per article, however, most wars are about conflicting ideas, affiliation, and a sense of greater purpose and moral views.  The weapons are just the manifestation irreconcilable belief differences.  


From the article:

Mr Fauverge is a policeman, not a wordsmith or a propagandist. He spoke not long after the drama and we can understand his lapses. But future police media training might include some media psychology.

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Here's what happened when psychologists took away people's phones

Here's what happened when psychologists took away people's phones | Psychology of Media & Technology | Scoop.it
VIDEO: Have we lost the ability to entertain ourselves only with our thoughts?
Dr. Pamela Rutledge's insight:

The conclusion on the video is that we've lost the ability to enjoy ourselves with only our thought for short periods of time.  First, I guess, I'd like to know compared to what.  Subjects were in a closed room not overlooking a grand vista. But that aside, for people with ADD like me, sitting with no ability to interact is incredibly (!) uncomfortable--and I presume that falling asleep was discouraged.   Why not call it curiosity or experimentation combined with the presence of the shock button (which by Wilson's admission isn't that strong). Maybe I'm weird, but that doesn't seem odd to me to give it a go and explore the sensation.

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Craig Shifrin's curator insight, November 27, 2015 4:15 AM

fantasy, projection, new personas all a part of when media replaces real life.

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New Facebook buttons designs | Icon Design contest by DesignCrowd

New Facebook buttons designs | Icon Design contest by DesignCrowd | Psychology of Media & Technology | Scoop.it
DesignCrowd asked its community of talented designers create new Facebook buttons that users could click to communicate how they feel about a page post.
Dr. Pamela Rutledge's insight:

Nothing shows the energy, humor and creativity of the human spirit better than crowdsourcing.  Check out the suggested designs for new Facebook buttons in a DesignCrowd project.  The ideas do a great job of capturing the myriad of human responses to TMI and 'it's all about me.'

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Engaging Storytelling's Future Banks on a Balance Between New Tech and the Analog (see correct link below)

Engaging Storytelling's Future Banks on a Balance Between New Tech and the Analog (see correct link below) | Psychology of Media & Technology | Scoop.it
PSFK speaks with author and digital culture guru Frank Rose on the highs and lows of engaging storytelling tools like virtual reality
Dr. Pamela Rutledge's insight:

Article at: http://www.psfk.com/2015/10/future-of-engaging-storytelling-createtech-conference-frank-rose-wired.html

Frank Rose has the ability to step back from all the excitement and 'shiny penny' aspects of technology and hone in on the critical experiential elements.  Art, film, image, music etc. have always been about shifting perspectives.  Technology enables new levels of experience.  Simple things, like sound added to film, were as mind-boggling an experience as VR.  But technology also needs to enable core drivers.  Where well produced VR gives visual control and good storytelling in VR can add meaning, it will be critical for developers to not overlook the primacy of social connection.

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No, Your Children Aren’t Becoming Digital Zombies

No, Your Children Aren’t Becoming Digital Zombies | Psychology of Media & Technology | Scoop.it
Should parents of teenagers be worried about smartphones and social media? A new survey of research provides encouraging news.
Dr. Pamela Rutledge's insight:

I hate to say "I told you so" (well, in this case, I don't really). This study reaffirms my position: We spend too much time making an artificial distinction between offline and online social worlds.  People are driven by core instincts--social connection is one of the big ones.  We choose the best methods we have to further our goals.  Given the choice, most people will choose face to face for maintaining relationships.  However, that isn't always the best choice.  Staying in touch frequently is more important than how you do it.   Texting is much more efficient (safer and less caloric, frankly) than hanging out at the local mall or in the parking lot of In 'n Out Burger. Therefore it allows for better maintenance of relationships, providing the "glue" between F2F contact.  Frequency is essential for developing closeness and trust in relationships.

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Rankings - 2015 - Best Global Brands - Best Brands - Interbrand

Rankings - 2015 - Best Global Brands - Best Brands - Interbrand | Psychology of Media & Technology | Scoop.it
Ranking the world’s most valuable brands.
Dr. Pamela Rutledge's insight:

Consider the strength and coherence of brand story along with Interbrand's other key components: an analysis of the financial performance of the branded products or services, the role the brand plays in purchase decisions, and the brand's competitive strength. Do they align?

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The new 'Yelp for people' app is a psychologist's nightmare

The new 'Yelp for people' app is a psychologist's nightmare | Psychology of Media & Technology | Scoop.it
You've probably heard about Peeple, the new app that lets you rate everyone from your friends to neighbors to ex-romantic partners the same way you rate businesses on Yelp.
Dr. Pamela Rutledge's insight:

This is weird for me to bash an app, because usually I'm the one saying that technology is a great.  However, there are limits and this Peeple is one.  I say this because it violates psychological fundamentals.  Peeple is a bad idea and is not going to work out well.  Consider the concerns over Facebook instituting the “Dislike” button and extend that to a rating system.  


I understand their intentions:

"Julia Cordray and Nicole McCullough, the app's co-founders, thought it would be useful to research people before you began a relationship with them the same way you would research a car or anything else before you committed to buying it. McCullough, a mother of two, said she created the app because she wanted a way to decide whether or not she could trust her neighbors"

But Cordray and McCullough are either naïve or mistaken if they are relying on Yelping your fellow citizens as a source of accurate information rather than a free-for-all.  The Washington Post reported that this app was driven the women's desire to promote empathy.  For anyone who thinks this is a manifestation of empathy; it is not.  Empathy means viewing the world through the other person’s eyes, not your own.  This is the exact opposite.  

The basic premise of peeple violates a lot of fundamental social rules.   Etiquette, although always an evolving set of norms, exists for a reason.  It facilitates social interaction.  It allows people to know the “rules of the game.”  This app, however well intentioned, is more likely to have negative than positive outcomes.  It opens the door for all kinds of bullying, whether it’s “social shaming,” disgruntled acquaintances, general trolls and haters or 'traditional' bullies.  (I make this distinction because bullies generally know their targets, whereas trolls and haters receive their emotional pay-off from spewing negativity without targets to get people to react.)  


The human brain is hardwired to react to social evaluations.  We care how other people think about us at a deep, instinctive level.  Social collaboration and social knowledge have been and continue to be critical to our physical and emotional survival.  Our world has changed since we were wandering the Savannahs fending off sabre tooth tigers, but our reactions remain the same.  Social wounds have the same impact as physical wounds.  They genuinely and literally hurt.


“Rating” people without a relational exchange is gossip at its worst.  It removes all context.  People fall back on instinctive heuristics all the time, such as voting the most attractive people, expressing double standards for gender behavior and public representation (like we see in the response to selfies), and other evidence of our inability to overcome inherent cognitive and biological bias and instincts.  


Honest feedback that is supposed to “help” others will not be heard because it will be instinctively felt as an attack.  Few people will give credence to this type of rating as valid evaluation, as recommendations are only as good as the person giving it.  Anyone who makes judgments about who their children should associate with based on Peeple-ratings should be reported to child protective services.  I hope it is youthful exuberance that leads them to think that "trust" is a function of hearsay and not a relational exchange.   Peeple will, however, provide an unhealthy sport to those who enjoy mud-slinging or need a new drinking game.

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