Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Seeker/DNews is optimistic about how people would behave during the apocalypse

I write a lot about post-apocalyptic fiction, particularly in films and television.  All of those thrive on conflict, which fuels drama and contributes to the viewers' entertainment.  Seeker/DNews reports that would be unrealistic in What Would Happen in an Apocalypse... According to Science.

Most people think the apocalypse would bring violence, crime, and selfishness. But according to scientists, that's just not realistic.
People remain calm as the world ends, video game study suggests
"As the world ends, will you lock arms and sing "Kumbayah" or embark on a path of law-breaking, anti-social behavior? A new study, based upon the virtual actions of more than 80,000 players of the role-playing video game ArcheAge, suggests you'll be singing. The study...found that despite some violent acts, most players tended toward behavior that was helpful to others as their virtual world came to an end."
I hope that's true.  If so, that's good news, even if it might not be good entertainment.

By the way, my wife plays ArcheAge.  I wonder what she'll think of the cited study, especially since she's a psychologist.  Hmm.


  1. Some interesting points here. This could resolve a question I've been curious about concerning the Syrian refugee crisis. Many Europeans have reacted with panic and hostility to the refugees arriving in their countries, while Middle Eastern countries like Jordan and Turkey have been much more open and less hostile, even though they're poorer than the Europeans and the numbers of refugees they're getting are much larger. According to the ideas here, the reason could be that the Middle Eastern countries are right next to Syria and have more of a feeling of being there at the site of the crisis, so the higher social reactions are triggered, whereas the Europeans are so far from the actual war that they aren't reacting that way and just see it as a flood of trespassers.

    It's much more convincing when one can cite as much data from actual crisis events as possible, as the video does toward the end. Unfortunately some people may quite watching halfway through because earlier he just keeps saying "according to studies" but doesn't give much in the way of specific examples.

    1. That's an interesting hypothesis about the European vs. Middle Eastern reactions to the Syrian refugee crisis. I think you're almost certainly right.

      As for citing the studies, that's why I included the link to and quote from the press release to one of them in the post. It makes the point more convincingly.