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The Psychology of Contagious Ideas


What compels people to share ideas? A group of scientists sought a neurological answer to the question, so they studied the brains of 19 UCLA students who were asked to pitch television shows to a group of other students. They found a correlation between persuasive students and activity in the temporoparietal junction -- an area of the brain that correlates to empathy and self identity.

"The findings could have important implications for understanding what attracts people to a certain idea...this, in turn, could be huge for advertising and other industries that deal in the spread of information and ideas."

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