Social Offload­ing: Using online meth­ods to inves­ti­gate social­ly embed­ded dis­trac­tor suppression


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Dr Miles Tufft — UCL

Behav­iours and their asso­ci­at­ed cog­ni­tive mech­a­nisms do not exist in iso­la­tion, rather they are embed­ded in a world that is nat­u­ral­ly social, and rich in con­text. By exper­i­men­tal­ly recre­at­ing min­i­mal social con­texts, while main­tain­ing an accept­able degree of con­trol, I inves­ti­gate how high­er order social fac­tors such as social hier­ar­chy, inter­per­son­al syn­chrony, and group mem­ber­ship come to mean­ing­ful­ly shape implic­it cog­ni­tive mech­a­nisms. With exam­ples from my recent stud­ies, using the pic­ture-word inter­fer­ence and spa­tial cuing par­a­digms, I will describe the online meth­ods we have used to reveal how social con­texts afford the offload­ing or sup­pres­sion of task-irrel­e­vant, dis­tract­ing infor­ma­tion (social offload­ing) in ways that are sen­si­tive­ly attuned to the social char­ac­ter­is­tics of dyadic inter­ac­tions. In doing so, I aim to share learn­ings on what is pos­si­ble when using online exper­i­men­tal plat­forms for social cog­ni­tion research, as well as offer­ing insights on the qual­i­ty and reli­a­bil­i­ty of col­lect­ing online chrono­met­ric data by com­par­ing lab-based ver­sus online stud­ies. I fin­ish by empha­sis­ing the impor­tance of re-world­ing par­tic­i­pants in mean­ing­ful con­texts to reveal the embed­ded­ness of behaviour.

Full Tran­script:

Jo Ever­shed 0:00
Hi, Miles. love­ly to have you back here.

Miles Tufft
Hi Jo. It’s great to be back.

Jo Ever­shed
Fan­tas­tic screen over to you when­ev­er you’re ready.

Miles Tufft 0:14
Have I shared the cor­rect screen that’s next ques­tion. Share the screen. Do you see my slides?

Jo Ever­shed 0:23
I am see­ing your slides. Yeah. One. Yeah. And they’re full screen and I can’t see any notes.

Miles Tufft 0:27
Okay, great. Won­der­ful. Over to you. Thanks, Jo. Hel­lo, every­one. And it’s, as Jo says, great to be back. I was here two years ago now for beonline 2020, right at the begin­ning of the pan­dem­ic. And back then, I shared a few insights in terms of some of the work that we start­ed to do to try and tran­si­tion our par­a­digms into an online envi­ron­ment. And as Jo intro­duced me as Yes, I research social cog­ni­tion. And I noticed in the chat ear­li­er, that there are a num­ber of peo­ple here that are inter­est­ed in atten­tion allo­ca­tion, dis­trac­tor sup­pres­sion, social cog­ni­tion, exec­u­tive con­trol. So hope­ful­ly, those peo­ple there will find some things of inter­est here in terms of how we’ve tran­si­tioned our par­a­digms and social cog­ni­tion into an envi­ron­ment using Gorilla.

So what I thought I’d start off by, just give you a lit­tle bit of a quick back­ground in terms of what my research is about. So rather obscure­ly described this talk as social­ly embed­ded dis­trac­tor sup­pres­sion. Most broad­ly, I’d say that what I’m inter­est­ed in is the way in which con­text shapes the way infor­ma­tion is pri­ori­tised. So, the way infor­ma­tion is pri­ori­tised in cog­ni­tion, what we up weight what we down weight, how does con­text shape that. And one way to think about infor­ma­tion, pri­or­i­ties and pri­ori­ti­sa­tion is to think in terms of dis­trac­tions. So, here’s the most dis­tract­ing thing that I could find off the inter­net, the move­ments. And you can imag­ine a per­son in this envi­ron­ment here being distracted.

And you can think of the dis­trac­tions in terms of things that are task rel­e­vant and task irrel­e­vant. So there is a sort of con­flict between these two pieces of infor­ma­tion. So there is a some ele­ment here of require­ment for pri­ori­ti­sa­tion, to the stuff that’s impor­tant. So down weight­ing dis­trac­tors, per­haps up weight­ing tar­gets in order to adapt to this sort of task rel­e­van­cy. Now, the way we’ve gone about oper­a­tional­iz­ing this is actu­al­ly to think of it in terms of seman­tic inter­fer­ence par­a­digms here, in this case, well, inter­fer­ence par­a­digms more gen­er­al­ly. But here I’m going to talk specif­i­cal­ly about seman­tic interference.

So I’m just gonna move this so I can actu­al­ly see what I’ve got on my slide. Okay, so let me just explain the pow­er of the base par­a­digm that we’re look­ing at. So in this par­a­digm, par­tic­i­pants would see a tar­get here, the tar­get being the pic­ture, a dog, and some sort of form of dis­trac­tor, which would be a word on top. Now, the dis­trac­tor can come in two flavours. So the task itself is that the par­tic­i­pant has to iden­ti­fy the pic­ture here in the sense of a dog. And they have to say, the word dog, and the dis­trac­tor on top is a sta­pler, which is seman­ti­cal­ly unre­lat­ed. So there is no seman­tic con­nec­tion between sta­pler and dog, there are dif­fer­ent categories.

How­ev­er, in anoth­er con­di­tion, there could be a dis­trac­tor, on top of the word here, mouse, which is actu­al­ly of the same cat­e­go­ry, seman­tic cat­e­go­ry in which there would be a con­flict and these are relat­ed. And what you find is that that seman­tic relat­ed­ness actu­al­ly slows down slight­ly the iden­ti­fi­ca­tion of the tar­get pic­ture under­neath. So relat­ing it back to what I was talk­ing about there in terms of pri­ori­ti­sa­tion of infor­ma­tion. Here, we’ve got two pieces of infor­ma­tion. And what we want to do is pri­ori­tise the tar­get here, which is the dog, but that pri­ori­ti­sa­tion, that tar­get is being inter­fered with with the dis­trac­tor infor­ma­tion here, the word on top, which is obvi­ous­ly also being processed in some way.

So this, here’s some data, this is some data that we col­lect­ed, actu­al­ly pre pan­dem­ic in the lab of just a basic par­a­digm part with par­tic­i­pants on their own, just doing the PWI tests. And what you get is this, what we call a seman­tic inter­fer­ence effect of about 42 mil­lisec­onds here. So they are 42 mil­lisec­onds slow­er to iden­ti­fy the dog when the word on top is relat­ed in mean­ing, is the basic is the basic idea.

Now what we’re going to ask here is if we social­ly embed par­tic­i­pants, so we put par­tic­i­pants in a social sit­u­a­tion where we divide up the task. So what we’re say­ing here is can we change the way that the dis­tract­ing infor­ma­tion on top is processed depend on whether that’s been looked after by anoth­er per­son. So here we have a sec­ond par­tic­i­pant come in, and we tell the par­tic­i­pant that this oth­er per­son is going to take care of that mouse infor­ma­tion. And then the par­tic­i­pant still has to iden­ti­fy the dog. So the part­ner says mouse and the par­tic­i­pant says dog. And the basic hypoth­e­sis and idea here was could we change the way that that dis­tract­ing infor­ma­tion is pri­ori­tised? Maybe depri­or­i­tize because now the par­tic­i­pant believes is being tak­en care of by their partner.

Now what we did pre pan­dem­ic is we brought peo­ple in the lab we had two con­di­tions and a loan con­di­tion where they sat by side by side across a par­ti­tion, whether you either had the com­put­er dis­con­nect­ed or con­nect­ed, and they either believed that they were work­ing togeth­er or alone. And then the togeth­er con­di­tion the key manip­u­la­tion was the belief that your part­ner was look­ing after that word, they were doing a task on the word. And in this case, the par­tic­i­pant rather than speak the word, they just had to decide where the last let­ter of the tar­get pic­ture end­ed in a vow­el or a con­so­nant. So remem­ber, dog, it ends in a con­so­nant. So they had to press the nine key on the key­board if it was con­sanant, or the one key was a vow­el, and their part­ner look­ing after the word had to decide how many vow­els were in were in the work, but did­n’t real­ly mat­ter, just the idea that the part­ner was in some way look­ing after that information.

And what we found is that we got this, okay, this was the bass result that I showed you, the 42 mil­lisec­onds. And we found this real­ly curi­ous result, that what hap­pened well, when your part­ner looked after that piece of infor­ma­tion, or you just believed it, and let me remind you here, the part­ner, there is a con­fed­er­ate. So that actu­al par­tic­i­pant part­ner is actu­al­ly doing noth­ing that just sat there, they just believe, that mere belief was actu­al­ly reduc­ing the degree to which that dis­tract­ing infor­ma­tion was being processed. And you’re negat­ing the seman­tic interef­er­ence, we removed seman­tic inter­fer­ence, this auto­mat­ic pro­cess­ing infor­ma­tion was being shaped by the con­text in which you found yourself.

So we were real­ly very excit­ed about this, we were excit­ed about all the dif­fer­ent pos­si­bil­i­ties that we could do mov­ing for­ward, and then the pan­dem­ic hit. So then we had to try and find a way of tran­si­tion­ing it online. And this is some of the work I briefly pre­sent­ed the first time it’d be online. But I did­n’t have the punch­line yet of how it all worked out. So I’m going to go through some of the basic results that we found. And some of the manip­u­la­tions that we then fol­lowed up on to try and show you some of the things you can do in terms of social cog­ni­tion research in an online environment.

So there were three areas in which we found in our expe­ri­ence over the last cou­ple of years that have worked rather well, in terms of tran­si­tion­ing online. So first thing was that we gam­i­fied. So we turned the basic seman­tic inter­fer­ence par­a­digm, the PWI par­a­digm into some­thing called the pic­ture word game. Okay, and here’s, sor­ry about that, is that gonna work, yep. So we have this idea, you come into the game, you con­nect to some ser­vice, you login. And this was all pos­si­ble in the in the Goril­la envi­ron­ment. And then we just tried to be a lit­tle bit cre­ative, get­ting them the sense that there were some sort of play­er par­tic­i­pant that came online into a game to play this pic­ture work­ing, and that they would be play­ing poten­tial­ly with some­one else. So this was the sec­ond thing, we had some social pres­ence when we tried to get them to meet a Con­fed­er­ate online. And we had these social pix­els, where they had an avatar in the top right hand cor­ner, that would rep­re­sent the oth­er par­ty. So here, we pre­tend­ed that they were find­ing a word mas­ter, they’d find some­one so that oth­er per­son will come online, they would come along, we were able to turn the video cam­era on the oth­er per­son, they would meet someone.

So there was also cre­at­ing this nor­mal social con­text, obvi­ous­ly, all not real. But we got try to try to deceive our par­tic­i­pants into believ­ing this. And then anoth­er thing we tried to do, which worked very well was have the shared work­spaces where we pre­tend­ed that they were actu­al­ly going to share their screen. So we had this pre­tend shared screen area where they gave per­mis­sions. And then they accept­ed per­mis­sions. And then they had this shared dis­play. So they believed that they were work­ing on the same screen, they were shar­ing their screens, here, they also typed in their name, they logged on, they had their name come in the top left hand cor­ner, and then they saw their part­ner type on screen to give that sense that they’re also on the shared screen, and then their their name will come in the top right hand corner.

So some of this, I think I pre­sent­ed ear­li­er ver­sions of this the first time, this is the more refined ver­sion. And this has worked remark­ably well for us, these three pil­lars have worked well. And we’ve found as you’ll see some very inter­est­ing results using this manip­u­la­tion for the min­i­mal social con­text online.

Okay, so what does that all cul­mi­nate in? Well, this is what it looks like the actu­al par­a­digm itself, you’ve got the pic­ture word inter­fer­ence par­a­digm, the stim­uli in the mid­dle where you’ve got pic­tures and words on top half, of them are relat­ed half unre­lat­ed, as I say, manip­u­la­tion here is the relat­ed­ness slows you down. And then you you’ve got this fram­ing this social frame, you’re on shared screen, you believe some­one else is there, you believe you’re work­ing with some­one. So what we were doing was com­par­ing whether we would get the same effect in the lab online, if you believe that there was some­one there play­er 2, here Chris, or not some­one that no one online play­ing with you.

Okay, so this is what we found. On the left hand side, I’ve got the lab result, the 42 mil­lisec­onds reduce, negat­ed to minus one mil­lisec­ond. And what we found is we repli­cat­ed the no part­ner con­di­tion where they weren’t paired with some­one, this is the online result, we got a nice 33 mil­lisec­onds PWI seman­tic inter­fer­ence effect, slight­ly slow­er on the relat­ed word, and once again, we found that that was removed when you believe that you were con­nect­ed with some­one online. So we were very, very encour­aged by this. We were a lit­tle bit dubi­ous where we would cre­ate that min­i­mal con­text in an online envi­ron­ment there’s lots of dis­trac­tions and so forth. But actu­al­ly, we found a lot of peo­ple found that very believ­able, and they very much com­ment­ed after­wards say­ing that they real­ly felt say hi to that per­son would very much you enjoy play­ing with that per­son, so forth. And they real­ly got through the gam­i­fi­ca­tion, the idea of what we were try­ing to get out what the task was about. And we were able to repli­cate the result with great consistency.

So what did we think? So I’m going to go through some of the manip­u­la­tions that we do. Well, we thought we could play around with this a lit­tle bit, I’m just gonna go through this lit­tle bit like a whistlestop tour of some of the things that we’ve done a bit of sort of smor­gas­bord of things that we’ve tried in terms of manip­u­lat­ing the social context.

So this is what it looks like when you meet some­one. This is me meet­ing Phillip, who’s the Con­fed­er­ate that has been the Con­fed­er­ate in about 1000 of the par­tic­i­pants that have col­lect­ed in my stud­ies, he’s been great. He’s famous, but famous­ly under­paid. And what we thought is what we could change who that per­son is, right? So one of the things that we thought, well, one of the hypothe­ses was how much we’ve had from pre­vi­ous stud­ies, whether social sta­tus affects the degree to which you are able to offload that infor­ma­tion. So the idea here is that you’re de pri­ori­tis­ing that that inter­fer­ing infor­ma­tion, when it’s looked after by some­one else, this gives us idea that you’re offload­ing that infor­ma­tion some­one else, would you offload that infor­ma­tion to some­one else, if you believed that they were of high­er or low­er social sta­tus, per­haps if you trust­ed them more than more because they’re of high sta­tus, they’re more like­ly to offload than you were some­one of low sta­tus. How sophis­ti­cat­ed is this effect? To what degree can this high lev­el social con­structs inter­act with these low lev­el auto­mat­ic mechanisms?

So what we did this was actu­al­ly did with a series of third years, which got third years to record them­selves both in low sta­tus gear like dress down, messy back­ground, stu­dents sort of hov­el sort of thing, and then dressed up in high sta­tus, with with smart back­grounds and so forth. And we’re try­ing to look, how does this affect, just the image, effect the degree to which you are going to do this social offload­ing that we thought this effect we were sort of inves­ti­gat­ing, and this is the base online results again, so this was just with a part­ner online, not a part­ner offline, 33, minus 9.

And what we found is this, with the low sta­tus, you get this inter­fer­ence effect of 37 mil­lisec­onds and with the high sta­tus that’s removed. And this is fas­ci­nat­ing, even more so because in both con­di­tions here, both con­di­tions are social. So you’re both meet­ing some­one, the only thing that’s dif­fer­ent is the way you’ve con­strued that per­son. So in one sta­tus you believe they are low sta­tus and in the oth­er one you believe they are high sta­tus, and the low sta­tus is dis­rupt­ing the offload­ing of that infor­ma­tion to some­one else such that you’re bring­ing back that inter­fer­ence, you’re pro­cess­ing that infor­ma­tion again, per­haps you’re not trust­ing them with that information.

Here’s anoth­er manip­u­la­tion that we ran well, we thought, well, social sta­tus comes in dif­fer­ent forms pres­tige, but also com­pe­ten­cy. Is it the fact that you believe that the oth­er per­son is com­pe­tent enough to look after that infor­ma­tion. So here using Goril­la, again, we try to manip­u­late the degree to which you believe they were good at the task your part­ner. So we either told them that they were the 148th ranked Word mas­ter, so that was the name of the per­son that was your part­ner in this game, or the 25th ranked so the top 15% of all word mas­ters. Does a high com­pe­ten­cy per­son or a low com­pe­ten­cy per­son change the degree to which you process that information.

And again, this is the basic online result always on the left. And what we found is yes, in the low com­pe­ten­cy, you get this stan­dard inter­fer­ence effect here a lit­tle bit larg­er, it 51 mil­lisec­onds a strong inter­fer­ence effect, but in the high com­pe­tence posi­tion that dis­ap­pears. So when you believe just that you’re work­ing with some­one of high com­pe­tence, again it’s both con­di­tions are social, you are able to remove the effect of pro­cess­ing that word infor­ma­tion, you are no longer pro­cess­ing that word infor­ma­tion in the same way. This is social con­text shap­ing infor­ma­tion processing.

This is one one of my favourites that we ran, we were think­ing about oth­er ways to increase pro social­i­ty. Right, because if this is about coop­er­a­tion, or trust, and so forth, well, there’s a whole area of lit­er­a­ture on terms of syn­chrony, behav­iour­al syn­chrony, if you can increase behav­iour­al syn­chrony between two peo­ple, you increase the like­li­hood of the proso­cial­i­ty sub­se­quent­ly. So here what we did, we had a bit of time, bit of fun try­ing to work out how to do this, on the top lev­el here is the com­put­er auto­mat­i­cal­ly giv­ing a response of a an avatar left and right, okay, and the bot­tom that is an actu­al par­tic­i­pant respond­ing, so they could press their but­tons on the keys, and their avatar would come up spon­ta­neous­ly on the screen.

And what we told them is that your part­ner is press­ing, and you just have to match them. Okay. But in one con­di­tion, we had it real­ly easy they were doing ‘bup bup bup bup bup’ but on the oth­er con­di­tion, Chris was a bit annoy­ing, and he was all over the place very, very unsyn­chro­nized. What we found is that when you per­ceive Chris to be asyn­chro­nous, you had a low self oth­er over­lap with one of the ways of mea­sur­ing affil­i­a­tion. And when you per­ceive him to be syn­chro­nous, you have a very high lev­el of self oth­er overlap.

But what we’re inter­est­ed in does this trans­late into the the offload­ing effect that I’ve talked about so far, again, the basic online result, and then yes, we could find this as well, right? So in the low syn­chrony con­di­tion, you get the stan­dard inter­fer­ence effect, but in the high­est syn­chrony con­di­tion that is removed again. So when you believe that you’ve worked with some­one that is in sync with you, you are more like­ly to not process that infor­ma­tion that word infor­ma­tion that we’re say­ing you’ve offloaded to the oth­er per­son, and there­fore, it does­n’t cost you in the same way as it would if you work with a low syn­chro­nous person.

Okay, final one I just want to talk about when recent­ly this was actu­al­ly run­ning in a stu­dent lab, we were inter­est­ed in group mem­ber­ship. So anoth­er one of those big oth­er areas in social psy­chol­o­gy that we want­ed to con­nect. If we try to group peo­ple on the basis of whether they saw a spin­ning bal­le­ri­na, this is an illu­sion. So we have this on Goril­la. Watch this spin around, do you see that mov­ing clock­wise or anti clock­wise? If you saw it mov­ing clock­wise, I think I remem­ber we called you the left­ies, you saw it mov­ing anti clock­wise, or was the oth­er way around, the anti clock­wise the left­ies and the clock­wise the right­ies. So we tried to put you into two min­i­mal groups.

This is you know, if you want to look at this good work by Steve Rik­er talk­ing about min­i­mal group for­ma­tion, okay. Now does form­ing min­i­mal groups, in groups and out groups then affect the degree to which you process that oth­er infor­ma­tion. And this result actu­al­ly came out slight­ly dif­fer­ent­ly than what we expect­ed, we expect­ed that you would offload your in group and not offload to your out­group. But we found com­plete­ly the oppo­site. We found that actu­al­ly, in your in group, you’ve got this offload­ing effect, that when you work with an out group mem­ber, you remove that inter­fer­ence effect in line with the oth­er. Now I could go on and talk about a lit­tle bit some of the ideas why we think that is, but actu­al­ly just the thing that I want to empha­sise in this talk is the remark­able con­sis­ten­cy of our online data. And that we were able to take this basic effect, we’re able to then use these very, very glob­al high lev­el com­plex social con­structs and imple­ment them in an online envi­ron­ment and get these very, very low lev­el pre­cise effects on a con­sis­tent basis, high­ly encour­ag­ing, we’re con­sis­tent­ly able to turn off seman­tic inter­fer­ence on the basis of the con­text in which you find your­self in.

So how am I doing for time here, I’ve got just 30 sec­onds to wrap up. So in terms of the­o­ry, well, this is all around this idea for us that cog­ni­tion is embed­ded with­in the social world, there’s some ben­e­fits come to face, these implic­it attune­ments, we’re sort of talk­ing about these implic­it auto­matic­i­ties being tuned into the social world, they’re not black boxed off, they are sen­si­tive to the con­structs we find around us. And this may be a skill based thing, that you’re implic­it­ly implic­it­ly lever­ag­ing oth­ers to reg­u­late the way that you process infor­ma­tion. And we want to talk to social offload­ing in the skill of being best together.

But I’m just going to rush through that slight­ly, because I just want to fin­ish by talk­ing about some of the insights that I’ve found in terms of work­ing online. And I keep on get­ting this thing in the way so I can’t read my slide. So the tran­si­tion online for has has proved very smooth. And we’ve gen­er­at­ed con­sis­tent data for us from lots of stud­ies. That’s one thing that hope­ful­ly, I’ve shown you. And we want to obvi­ous­ly say that online behav­iour­al data has the sen­si­tiv­i­ty to pick up on these min­i­mal social effects. Okay, so we were wor­ried that that might not be the case, obvi­ous­ly, these online envi­ron­ments are a lit­tle bit more noisy. But actu­al­ly, what we found is they do trans­late through and we were find­ing this con­sis­tent effect. We have also received con­sis­tent high lev­els of believ­abil­i­ty using the frame­work that I’ve showed you. And we’ve exclud­ed par­tic­i­pants who did not believe but we’re enter­ing sort of the mid 90s, in terms of believ­abil­i­ty. And we’ve not actu­al­ly one analy­sis that I want­ed to and I haven’t been able to get around to doing is look­ing at that 5% To see whether we’re not get­ting the effect in that last 5% that we are in the in the major 95%.

One big thing that I found that has been a big improve­ment is gam­i­fi­ca­tion. That’s been a huge step change in terms of main­tain­ing engage­ment and the under­stand­ing of the task. We do have atten­tion checks through­out our par­a­digm, we ask peo­ple to per­form the task to get over a cer­tain lev­el, then they pass and they can go through to the actu­al main task. But actu­al­ly, we found that dropout rate sig­nif­i­cant­ly dropped once we actu­al­ly achieved this gam­i­fied envi­ron­ment where they believe that where they were play­ing a game, and they were actu­al­ly enjoy­ing being a part of this envi­ron­ment in which we were try­ing to cre­ate. So I think I might well stop there because actu­al­ly that that time went much quick­er than I thought thanks to Pro­fes­sor Daniel Richard­son, col­lab­o­ra­tor, Goril­la. Thanks, Jo, Nick and the team and the stu­dents for sort of col­lect­ing data with me.

Jo Ever­shed
Miles, that’s extraordinary.

And I I’ve nev­er had a talk on lan­guage fol­lowed by talk on social cog­ni­tion, this seman­tic Stroop Task essen­tial­ly inter­fer­ence. And it just, you know, you’ve con­tex­tu­alised so much of what Neil was talk­ing about, because of course, when you’re talk­ing lan­guage to anoth­er per­son who’s there by dialect or like you, are you doing this social offload­ing, because they under­stand this as well or not, right? Like, we can’t think about lan­guage just in the sit­u­a­tion where you’re just one per­son who’s speak­ing because the whole pur­pose of lan­guage is that it sits with­in a social con­text. So you’ve made me have com­plete­ly new thoughts that I haven’t had before. I’m sure oth­er peo­ple have had these thoughts.

Miles Tufft 19:47
No no absolute­ly, it was a great fol­low on from Neil. Yes. Yeah.

What a, what a hap­py mar­riage. One ques­tion that came to me, there are some ques­tions in the q&a that we’ll come to and any­body else who’s online now has a ques­tion for them, Miles, dump them into q&a. And miles, if peo­ple have oth­er ques­tions, are they wel­come to reach out to you?

Miles Tufft
Absolute­ly. Yes.

Jo Ever­shed
So peo­ple can reach out to you. How do you do all those ani­ma­tions? Because like, obvi­ous­ly, we now actu­al­ly have mul­ti­play­er in Goril­la. So you could actu­al­ly do this as a mul­ti­play­er exper­i­ment. But you did­n’t, you did a fake mul­ti­play­er exper­i­ment. And you made it look like a game with all these fan­cy ani­ma­tions. How did you make those,

Miles Tufft 20:25
so a lot of mak­ing of gifts. We cre­at­ed a lot of gifs, a lot of which we then you either cre­at­ed in Pow­er­Point or some oth­er form of PNG, and then we sort of import­ed them into the Goril­la plat­form, and so forth. But obvi­ous­ly, one of the things that we’re very excit­ed about is mul­ti­play­er. And so that’s one of the things we want to try and auto­mate that a lit­tle bit more, and bring it into that envi­ron­ment and so forth. But this was a lot of this stuff was done about sort of a year and a half ago, when we were first start­ing out and try­ing to devel­op that. So we had to be inno­v­a­tive and cre­ative in terms of the ways in which we could cre­ate these envi­ron­ments. Yes.

Jo Ever­shed 20:59
So one top tip for peo­ple, if you want to make your tasks more game­like it real­ly is just as sim­ple as chang­ing your images to GIFs, putting a bit of move­ment in them cre­at­ing a bit of a fic­tion, and even in the task builder, you can cre­ate some game like expe­ri­ences. Let me go to the q&a. Oh, no, no open ques­tions at the moment. There’s a ques­tion in the chat, though. Do you mea­sure social influ­ence or need for unique­ness of your respondents?

Do we mea­sure social need for uniqueness

mea­sure social influ­ence, or the need for unique­ness of your respon­dents? Maybe these mod­er­ate your find­ings. Dr. Mostan­za can you say more about this is this is the idea that your part- that if the par­tic­i­pants feel that they’re sim­i­lar to each oth­er, that they are an in, like one in group? Where­as if they’re more dif­fer­ent to each oth­er, they’re more dif­fer­ent? Is that the idea of get­ting at? We’ll see? Yes, yes, that’s the ques­tion. So do you look at how dif­fer­ent the par­tic­i­pant per­ceives them­selves to be to the confederate?

Miles Tufft 22:04
That’s a very nice ques­tion. And it’s actu­al­ly one of the areas that we were look­ing into degree of social close­ness and social sim­i­lar­i­ty. That’s where we sort of went round the mem­ber­ship stuff on a sort of more group lev­el. But yes, def­i­nite­ly, that’s some­thing that would be an inter­est­ing way to get at, again, the way that the social world mod­u­lates. I think the key point here is that we can’t think of our brains or cog­ni­tion as sep­a­rate from the world, we have to think of them as embed­ded, and there­fore built from the bot­tom up in the world, and there­fore shaped by the things that we encounter in this world, one of which could well be social influ­ence. And so social dis­tance and social over­lap. And one of those things that we would expect may be shaped the way the infor­ma­tion is pri­ori­tised or depri­ori­tised. I nev­er talked about mech­a­nism as well. And so mech­a­nism here may be well atten­tion, right. So selec­tive atten­tion the way that we attend to things or down­reg­u­late atten­tion. That could be the way that this has been medi­at­ed. Brilliant.

Jo Ever­shed 22:55
Miles. Thank you, you might, Mostan­za might want to chat with you fur­ther in the chat. We’re now going to go to our next speaker


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