Late last month, smack in the middle of the DiMasi trial and right around the time we learned of Arnold’s infidelity, a Science study out of Northeastern University popped into the world and promptly landed itself in headlines across the blogosphere. The title, “The Visual Impact of Gossip,” pretty much explains its popularity off the bat. The gist was this: juicy gossip – that is, negative social information about someone – increases the importance of the info-associated face to your unconscious brain as it makes split-second decisions about what, from the relentless flood of information it receives from the outside world, to notice and linger on without you ever even realizing a decision has been made. It means that whether you mean to or not, you will zero in on that guy you heard once fired someone before Christmas/pooped in the street/threw a chair at a classmate.
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