Interview with Dr Agnieszka Janik McErlean – lead author of the research study on ASMR triggers, personality, and empathy

ASMR Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response UniversityDr Agnieszka Janik McErlean is the lead author of the publication, “Assessing individual variation in personality and empathy traits in self-Reported Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response.”

At the time of the publication she was a Lecturer in the Department of Psychology at James Cook University in Singapore.  In January 2018, she will be a Senior Lecturer in the Dept of Psychology at Bath Spa University in the UK.

Dr Janik McErlean co-authored the paper with Dr Michael Banissy and the research was published March 30, 2017 in the journal Multisensory Research.

In my interview with Dr Janik McErlean she shares how she became interested in researching ASMR, the goals and methods of her study, the insights she uncovered about ASMR triggers, and her findings about the personality and empathy traits of ASMR responders.

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Dr. Diego Garro presents ASMR paper at London conference

ASMR Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response UniversityDr. Diego Garro is a Senior Lecturer at Keele University in the United Kingdom. He has a BSc in Electronic Engineering, an MSc in Digital Music Technology, an MA in Teaching and Learning in Higher Education and a PhD in Composition.

In 2015, I interviewed Dr. Garro about his translated summary of Alejandro Navarro Expósito’s Spanish-language dissertation, “Neuropsychological and neurophysiological characterization of ASMR”.

Dr. Garro has continued his interest in ASMR by writing a paper titled, “ASMR – from internet subculture to audiovisual therapy” and presenting it at the 2017 Electronic Visualization and the Arts conference in London.

In my interview with Dr. Garro he shares how he became interested in studying ASMR, the goals of his paper, reactions to his conference presentation, and tips for others doing ASMR presentations.

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Viewers of live ASMR videos may soon be able to feel the touch of an ASMR artist with Flex-N-Feel gloves

ASMR Autonomous Sensory Meridian ResponseVideo ASMR artists can directly stimulate ASMR in viewers with gentle sounds, soft voices, and comforting visuals.

But they have been unable to directly stimulate the sensation of touch through a video.  And touch may be the strongest trigger of ASMR.

Could there be a way to feel the touch of someone who is in another room or even in another country?

Yes.

Researchers at Simon Fraser University in Canada have designed gloves called Flex-N-Feel to be worn by individuals at separate locations.  When one person Flexes their fingers in the gloves, the other person Feels the touch via vibrotactile sensations on their skin.

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Amazon’s Alexa can now whisper, is this the first virtual ASMR artist?

ASMR Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response UniversityAlexa is a virtual assistant created by Amazon which runs on the  Amazon Echo devices.

Users interact with Alexa by voice command to initiate many actions such as; set alarms, play music, podcasts, or audiobooks, create to-do lists, and inquire about the weather, traffic, news, and other information.

Until now, Alexa’s voice has been a spoken female voice, but Amazon has just added the ability for Alexa to whisper.  Alexa will also be able to take a breath to pause for emphasis and adjust her rate, pitch and volume.

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The Royal Geographical Society is planning to address ASMR at a conference session

ASMR Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response UniversityThe Royal Geographical Society will be holding their Annual International Conference in London, from August 29 to September 1, 2017.

One of the sessions being planned for the conference is titled, “Soundscapes of Wellbeing”. This session will focus on the different ways in which people experience or perceive certain therapeutic benefits from interactions with sound.

And yes, they are interested in incorporating information about ASMR into this session from ASMR researchers.

This is exciting news for several reasons, including that this may be the first international conference to include ASMR on their agenda.

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Libby Copeland visits Whisperlodge for a live ASMR experience

ASMR Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response UniversityLibby Copeland lives in Westchester, NY, USA and has a BA degree in English from the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, USA.

She has been a staff reporter, editor, and/or writer for The Washington Post, Slate, New York Magazine, Smithsonian Magazine, The Wall Street Journal, and Glamour, as well as, made appearances on MSNBC, CNN, and NPR.

Libby also has a strong interest in ASMR.

She recently traveled to Brooklyn, NY to experience one of the first live, in-person, professional ASMR services called Whisperlodge, and then wrote about it for New York Magazine.

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Ritz Crackers creates ASMR-inspired commercial

ASMR Autonomous Sensory Meridian ResponseRitz Crackers has recently joined the growing list of big name companies which have created ASMR-inspired ads.

Dove chocolate released two ASMR-inspired ads in November 2015, Pepsi posted a short ASMR-inspired ad in April 2016, and KFC launched an ASMR-inspired ad in July 2016.

The Ritz Crackers video ad is in Korean but it clearly communicates the universal language of ASMR.

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