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Psychology Roundup

June 1, 2012

Viewing photos of men and women upside down affects our ability to recognize what’s in the picture.



Viewing woman as things. I’m Bob Hirshon and this is Science Update.

People view scantily clad women as objects, rather than people, according to a study in the journal Psychological Science. Prior research showed that we can recognize pictures of objects turned upside down, but have trouble recognizing people upside down. In the new research, when both men and women were shown upside down images of men in their underwear, they had trouble recognizing the same men right side up—just as you’d expect. But images of upside down women in similar attire were easily recognized when shown right side up—a sign that we view them as objects.

In other news, researchers found that people who answered surveys about habits like drinking alcohol and exercising were more honest and accurate when responding by text, rather than voice.  No conclusions yet as to why we are more likely to make things up verbally than when texting. I’m Bob Hirshon for AAAS, the Science Society.