Essential Reads

Could New Facebook Features Help You Get Over Your Ex?

Features that let you see less of your ex may help you heal after a break-up.

Shame and Envy in the World of Social Media

Are your Facebook habits getting you down?

Why Did ISIS Do It?

The logic of ISIS in Paris.

Why Social Media Matters in the Paris Terrorist Attacks

Social media is the terrorist’s best and worst friend

Recent Posts on Media

Why Germany needs to rethink what it means to be German

One-fifth of Germany’s population has at least one parent who was not born in Germany, referred to as having a “migrational background.” Among this group, almost nine million were born in Germany, yet remain “hyphenated Germans” who must tick “yes” on job applications and official forms to the question: “Are you a German with a migrational background?”

What Video Gaming Tells Us

By Kirby Farrell Ph.D. on November 29, 2015 A Swim in Denial
Humans everywhere use culture to turn fear into play. Video games turn paranoia into survival ecstasy and fertility—more life. These deep creaturely motives are symptomatic of many concerns today, from terrorism to virtual identity.

The Bloody, Secret Life Of Theories

By Vyv Evans Ph.D. on November 29, 2015 Language in the Mind
To the lay-person, the Academy is the venue where research is focused, with almost saintly zeal, on pursuing truth. But academic research is always framed in terms of a prevailing theory, which, like cultures, and people, are social phantasms, that come with baggage, good, bad and downright ugly.

Critical Thinking 101: Why Lies Travel Faster than Truth

Mark Twain said it best: "A lie can travel half way around the world while the truth is putting on its shoes."

4 Psychological Smartphone Apps Designed to Benefit Behavior

Too little sleep, too much stress, anxiety over getting the kids to school on time, and a fear of flying are common issues that are addressed by these smartphone or tablet apps.

Watching Star Wars the Right Way

By David Kyle Johnson Ph.D. on November 25, 2015 Plato on Pop
In what order should you watch the original saga? Release order? Episode order? Or an entirely different order altogether? And what all should you catch up on? The Clone Wars cartoon? The Zahn Novels (a.k.a. The Thrawn Trilogy)? The Holiday Special? What counts as canon?

The Rise and Rapid Reduction of 'Rowdy' Ronda Rousey

By E. Paul Zehr Ph.D. on November 24, 2015 Black Belt Brain
Even though we enjoy watching the best athletes demonstrate their skills, we also like to see skillful, but super-confident athletes get beaten. Is it because we cannot identify with them?

Could New Facebook Features Help You Get Over Your Ex?

Facebook may soon be helping you manage your relationship with your ex by allowing you to limit how much of them you see in your news feed without unfriending or blocking them. Research on coping with break-ups suggests that Facebook has the right idea about how to deal with your ex.

How to Avoid Being Deceived by Opinion Polls

Master manipulators in politics, government, business, and media use opinion polls to influence our thinking, our choices, and our behavior. Learn to know when you’re being played for a rube.

The Void Social Media Fills

The average American spends 7.6 hours a month on social media. Social media sites enable people to connect with each other no matter on which continent or in which time zone they reside. Although it allows people to stay in touch with loved ones around the world, can social media become an addiction?

Female Serial Killers Are No Myth

By Scott A. Bonn Ph.D. on November 23, 2015 Wicked Deeds
The news and entertainment media focus on and sensationalize the acts of violence and torture perpetrated by male serial killers. Although the graphic images of male serial killers sell countless books and movie tickets, they also perpetuate the myth that all serial killers are demented men.

Does Faking a Fake World Make It Real?

When "fake" means "real," what are kids to think? And the rest of us?

Going Screenfree: Sheer Madness or Sheer Genius?

Whether a parent senses screen-time is having a negative impact on a child or simply feels there's way too much of it, constantly managing electronics use can drive parents crazy. Here are three tips to help parents go from thinking "something needs to change" to taking decisive action.

Shame and Envy in the World of Social Media

From a mental health standpoint, you should be more likely to browse through the Facebook posts of your friends and acquaintances to make yourself feel better. The reality is that social networks can just as often stimulate the unpleasant emotions of shame and envy. Here's how to shrug off those posts that peeve you.

Life in the Slow Lane in the Fastest City on Earth

Is it possible to decelerate when everyone else around you is going at the speed of light. Journalist Bill Powers gave it a try. And discovered you can shape society by going slower.

Altered Minds

By Hara Estroff Marano on November 20, 2015 Nation of Wimps
In a new film, Altered Minds, director Michael Z Wechsler bases the psychological suspense on covert mind-control experiments.

Why Are Media Beauty Ideals Toxic for Our Daughters?

It is important for parents to know that there is a direct relationship between the amount of time that girls spend viewing media images and whether or not they will have negative body image. And we know that negative body image is related to many other problems like low self-esteem, depression, excessive dieting, and eating disorders. Some practical strategies to try.

Gambling Advertising And Marketing

By Mark D. Griffiths Ph.D. on November 19, 2015 In Excess
Over the last few years there has been a great deal of speculation over the role of advertising as a possible stimulus to increased gambling, and as a contributor to problem gambling (including underage gambling). But can gambling advertising and marketing be done in a more socially responsible way?

Signs of Overdependence on the Internet and Social Media

The Internet provides a constant, ever-changing source of information and entertainment.

Why Are Drugs So Outrageously Expensive?

By Allen J Frances M.D. on November 18, 2015 Saving Normal
The drug industry is the most profitable on earth because it has exercised its power to price gouge. The combination of mounting public outrage, frequent media exposure, and the politics of this election season now provide the critical ingredients for possible change.

How to Use Social Affinity Groups to Engage Customers

A simple, cheap and effective method to use current social memberships of customers to influence their long-term behaviors.

Why Did ISIS Do It?

By Clark McCauley Ph.D. on November 17, 2015 Friction
ISIS has a strategy. Our reaction to Paris is part of it.

How to Feel Safe When Bad Things Happen

After devastating national or international tragedies, we all find ourselves living in a world that is materially the same but psychologically altered. Finding a way to feel safe is essential to living well and thriving. Follow these four steps to help you and your family feel secure in times of tragedy.

Why Social Media Matters in the Paris Terrorist Attacks

Acts of terrorism need to be public to get attention, to spread fear. Social media amplifies it all. People around the world instantaneously see the horror and feel the sense of vulnerability and chaos. Social media also shows terrorism for what it is, senseless, reprehensible violence. Because of this, it brings people together and strengthens the resolve to oppose it.

Gwen and Blake: Why Opposites Attract in Intense Situations

By Suzanne Lachmann Psy.D. on November 17, 2015 Me Before We
While Blake and Gwen are unique, their situation is not. A heightened, shared experience can bring people together against all odds.

Can't We Just Talk?

Can’t we just talk? Is social media replacing our ability to connect and empathize?

Terror on the Tube: Background Television & Little Ones

By Jamie Krenn Ph.D. on November 16, 2015 Screen Time
Recently, Paris came under attack to a horrific set of events. While most young children are not sitting down to watch the evening news, a fair set of households do keep television news on in the background. Encourage children to talk about what they have viewed either in the foreground or the background can help.

Replication Problems in Psychology

By Jeremy D. Safran Ph.D. on November 15, 2015 Straight Talk
A major research study recently found that many well known findings in psychology are difficult to replicate.This study and the media attention it has received have led to a considerable stir within the field. While some minimize the importance of these findings, they do rekindle longstanding debates about what kind of 'science' psychology is.

The Audacity of Hype

Hope often trumps hope in health care.