Well, “no duh,” you might say. Still, the study findings are pretty interesting:
Instant messages are ubiquitous and convenient, but something primal may be lost in translation.
When girls stressed by a test talked with their moms, stress hormones dropped and comfort hormones rose. When they used IM, nothing happened. By the study’s neurophysiological measures, IM was barely different than not communicating at all.
“IM isn’t really a substitute for in-person or over-the-phone interaction in terms of the hormones released,” said psychologist Leslie Seltzer of the University of Wisconsin, a co-author of the new study. “People still need to interact the way we evolved to interact.”
My last boyfriend broke up with me because I didn’t text him back often enough and/or in the right way. I tried to explain to him that I didn’t like using it to substitute actual conversation (plus I have a tendency to not hear the notification so some texts went unanswered), but he really didn’t care. I’m glad that I have the scientists on my side.
Created this weekend over the course of six hours as part of Longshot magazine’s Debt issue, “Circles of Influence” is a chart of artistic, scientific, and phiosophical debts through time. It’s also very pretty and something we’d like to hang on our wall.
Listen to a Longshot Radio interview about the making of this chart with Michelle Legro of Lapham’s Quarterly, Maria Popova of Brain Pickings, and illustrator Wendy MacNaughton.