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This is Your Brain on Media: Producing Media for the Mind in a Digital Age

Posted by Julie Willbrand on September 12, 2008

Paul Bolls, Glenn Leshner, and Kevin Wise all made some interesting points during their forum Thursday afternoon in the Reynolds Journalism Institute.  One of the most interesting to me, though, was articulated by Paul Bolls, who said that Mizzou’s PRIME Lab (Psychological Research on Information and Media Effects) has observed that people are generally more responsive to political ads in which a single person speaks to them versus very high-tech ads or, worse, a person speaking to them from several unrelated settings.  This, he explained, is because the human brain is designed to deal with real life, not media, and is therefore more responsive to a more “realistic” form of communication.

Bolls also discussed the importance of distinguishing between attention and emotion.  Wise talked about the transition between text and video, and Leshner covered the “yuck! concept” of fear appeals. 


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