Another way to explore whether we experience other people differently in the real world and in the digital world is by examining our brain. Maybe our brain functions differently online and offline and, as a result, uses different sets of responses for these settings.
When it comes to experiencing anything in the outside world, the amygdala is the brain’s first responder. This little part of the brain is responsible for detecting threats and reacting to them. All information about the world as gathered by our senses is first assessed by the amygdala. Does the amygdala function differently in online and offline settings?
To get an answer to this question we approached on Twitter the world’s foremost authority on the amygdala, Joseph LeDoux.
Onno Hansen-Staszyński: “Dear Mr. LeDoux, does the amygdala react differently in online settings – since so many hardcoded dangers are absent there?”
Joseph E. LeDoux: “Perhaps. But I have no info on that”
Onno Hansen-Staszyński: “Do you have any suggestions on where to look for an answer?”
Joseph E. LeDoux: “sorry i don’t know anything about that.”
To be continued…