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Author Topic: Has anyone researched the feeling of being watched?  (Read 17703 times)

Marco Lista

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Marco Lista asked the Naked Scientists:
   
Hi there, you guys are awesome!!!

My question is: have anybody ever tried to look (in a scientific way of
course) at the strange feeling we all sometimes have of "being looked at" or being observed and the, in my opinion, incredible capacity of our eyes to spot instantly if anybody in our sight is looking at us?

Then I have a suggestion for u: it is calendars time. How about a
nakedscientist calendar? Of course no real naked scientists (it is hard to find people decent enough for a calendar shot in this category:) rather with some cool natural phenomena pictures. Then you could use the income to support some nice research project!!!

Peace

Marco Lista

What do you think?
« Last Edit: 12/11/2009 19:35:29 by BenV »


 

Offline Geezer

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Has anyone researched the feeling of being watched?
« Reply #1 on: 13/11/2009 03:33:28 »
On the other hand, if someone is driving and talking on a cell phone, it is virtually impossible to make eye contact with them. You can drive along side them and stick out your tongue, but they remain oblivious. (I have tested this theory on many occasions when I am in the passenger seat!)
 

Offline RD

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Has anyone researched the feeling of being watched?
« Reply #2 on: 13/11/2009 04:13:15 »
Q. Has anyone researched the feeling of being watched?

A. Yes ... http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Psychic_staring_effect

IMO This feeling is paranoia. A paranoid person feels they are being spied on / followed / persecuted. This feeling causes them to turn their head see if someone behind is looking at them, this head movement causes people to look at them, giving the stare-ee the false impression that the feeling they were being stared at was correct, (in reality they weren't being looked at until paranoia caused them to turn their head).   
« Last Edit: 13/11/2009 05:04:41 by RD »
 

Offline Geezer

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Has anyone researched the feeling of being watched?
« Reply #3 on: 13/11/2009 04:28:19 »
RD - like they say,

"Just because you're paranoid, it doesn't mean they are not out to get you."

or,

"I'm not paranoid. They really are out to get me. If I was paranoid I would just think they are out to get me."
 

Offline Vercingetorix

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Has anyone researched the feeling of being watched?
« Reply #4 on: 13/01/2010 20:54:49 »
thanks RD for the link, very interesting.
On the other hand, if this feeling is caused by paranoia, we live in a "paranoidic" world.
 

Offline ch3ls3a

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Has anyone researched the feeling of being watched?
« Reply #5 on: 20/01/2010 17:30:38 »
It's most likley paranoia but the paranoia has to start from somewhere so where does the paranoia start form?  When do you suddenly think im being watched?
 

Offline doppler1

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Has anyone researched the feeling of being watched?
« Reply #6 on: 21/01/2010 04:45:47 »
I think that there is more to this than just peoples noticing other peoples heads turning and then looking because I have often had a situation when I stare at someone (no head movement after I am actually staring) and I would say that 80 to 90% of the time, they will turn and look in my direction. I have a 21/2 year old son and he is usually a fairly good sleeper but on a few occasions when I have had time to watch him sleep before work, without any noises or other stimuli, he becomes restless and usually wakes up. Do you think that this is caused by a old survival sense type thing or is it based on the fact that I would like to believe that we are still finding out about hidden or misunderstood capabilities of the human body and its sensory system, and therefore read more into these random and coincidental events.
 

Offline yor_on

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Has anyone researched the feeling of being watched?
« Reply #7 on: 21/01/2010 20:17:59 »
Q. Has anyone researched the feeling of being watched?

A. Yes ... http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Psychic_staring_effect

IMO This feeling is paranoia. A paranoid person feels they are being spied on / followed / persecuted. This feeling causes them to turn their head see if someone behind is looking at them, this head movement causes people to look at them, giving the stare-ee the false impression that the feeling they were being stared at was correct, (in reality they weren't being looked at until paranoia caused them to turn their head).   

RD I  found it very interesting reading that wiki. It seems that in both cases when doing the experiment 'staring' in a lab or in a more uncontrolled environment there is a weight leaning towards people being aware more than is statistically justifiable. It's a little like ghosts and spiritism.

For those believing in those phenomena the main reason why they fail inside the laboratory is, the laboratory :)  But here there is this overweight in both cases, I'm not sure how it works but i tend to think that there is something 'real'  to that feeling.
 

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Has anyone researched the feeling of being watched?
« Reply #7 on: 21/01/2010 20:17:59 »

 

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