Friday, June 26, 2009

People's Right Ears are More Obliging

"Requests to the Right Ear Are More Successful Than to the Left"
Wired Science (June 23, 2009)

"You're in a loud and sweaty Italian dance club when a woman approaches you. To be heard over the techno, she leans in close and yells into your ear, 'Hai una sigaretta?'

"If she spoke into your right ear, you would be twice as likely to give her a cigarette than if she asked by your left ear, according to a new study that employed this methodology in the clubs of Pescara, Italy. Of 88 clubbers who were approached on the right, 34 let the researcher bum a smoke, compared with 17 of 88 whom she approached on the left.

" 'The present work is one of the few studies demonstrating the natural expression of hemispheric asymmetries, showing their effect in everyday human behavior,' write psychologists Daniele Marzoli and Luca Tommasi of the University G. d'Annunzio in Italy in the journal Naturwissenschaften...."

This article appears to be on the level: and there was a pretty good reason for using a 'natural' setting for the experiment, rather than the usual lab. "Requests to the Right Ear..." is a pretty good overview of some very interesting research.

And, a reminder that we're still learning how our brains work.

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