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Scandals and secrets and superinjunctions: why is gossip so irresistible?

We all love a bit of juicy gossip don't we? Well I do anyway..... asked last week if Steven Sylvester had a view on why we're so addicted to scandal, he wasn't short of a few words. Michael Moran's article for the BBC is linked below. This is what Steven had to say on the matter. Psychologist Steven Sylvester says that it’s always been in our nature to gossip, but perhaps not to the extent that it is today. “It’s a human necessity to deflect negative issues or emotions away from ourselves. It makes us feel better in the short term. Gossip gives us light relief as we can pay attention to someone else’s problems. This distraction is a tactic that allows us to project our own fears, anxieties and inadequacies onto others, meaning we do not have to face our own deep-seated insecurities.” “It’s a comparatively recent development that ordinary people have had enough private space to develop secrets of their own. The largely communal life that only really ended with the Industrial Revolution made secrets hard to create, let alone keep. Perhaps the rapid expansion of social media will spell an end to privacy, and all our secrets will be public knowledge again.” “The local family and friends circle is much wider now through social media, and people have become more closed ‘face-to-face’ on what they share personally with family and friends for fear of this information being shared and spread by others on their own digital channels. This is despite it appearing on the outside that we are more open, as we have many friends on social media and share lots of personal information.” “Ultimately, this can actually cause loneliness and isolation as we withdraw more from personal contact in favour of sharing certain aspects of our lives digitally for all to see, often craving some of this to be shared, because we want to feel part of an online community.” Article by Michael Moran for BBC


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