How we change what others think, feel, believe and do
The ChangingMinds Blog!
Sexy screen locations
Did you know that where you look changes what you see? Well, maybe not physically, but it can change how you feel about it. Perception is reality in many ways and there are some strange effects that can be hard to explain.
One example is photos on screen. Say you are laying out a web page that includes your photograph -- where would you put the photo? Would it matter? Research by Brian Meier and Sarah Dionne found that women rate men's photos as more attractive when they are near the top of the screen, but men rate women's photos as more attractive when they are near the bottom of the screen.
So what is going on here? An explanation is that we are using the metaphor of 'height = power', with people closer to the top of the screen seeming taller. This then plays to the evolutionary drive that makes men prefer smaller women and makes women seek powerful men.
Subtle. Politically incorrect. But that's how it works and we need to take all knowledge into account.
Reference: B.P. Meier and S. Dionne (2010). Downright sexy: Verticality, implicit power and attractiveness. Social Cognition, 27, 883-892
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