Friday, June 24, 2011

Sex Cues and the Media

There's a new academic study out entitled "Sexual Cues Emanating From the Anchorette Chair: Implications for Perceived Professionalism, Fitness for Beat, and Memory for News".

Writen by Maria Elizabeth Grabe and Lelia Samson of Indiana University, Bloomington, the experimental study:-

employed one of the most compelling visual cues of female sexual attractiveness (low waist-to-hip ratio) to test the influence of news anchor sexualization on audience evaluations of her as a professional and their memory for the news that she presents. Male participants saw the sexualized version of the anchor as less suited for war and political reporting. They also encoded less news information presented by the sexualized than her unsexualized version.

Conclusions were drawn in line with evolutionary psychology expectations of men’s cognitive susceptibility to visual sex cues. Women participants, on the other hand, did not vary across conditions in their assessments of the anchor’s competence to report on war and political news. Moreover, they encoded more news information presented by the sexualized than unsexualized anchor condition.

The "low waist-to-hip ratio" is compellingly sexually attractive?

When does a viewer ever see that space?

Behind the news desk, she would appear so:

Without the desk, you'd see this:

What are they talking about?

The "low-waist to hip ratio" (WHR) is

...the ratio of the circumference of the waist to that of the hips. Strictly, the waist circumference is measured at a level midway between the lowest rib and the iliac crest, and the hip circumference at the level of the great trochanters, with the legs close together. The waist-hip ratio equals the waist circumference divided by the hip circumference.

I still don't get it.  Even blind men prefer that and they can't see.

Anyone enlighten me?

Ah, this is a bit more clear:

The study was done in a controlled fashion, where men watched the same 24-year-old anchor read the news in a newscast produced by the researchers. In one newscast, the anchor "was dressed in a tight-fitting dark blue jacket and skirt that accented her waist-to-hip ratio," and she wore red lipstick and a necklace, said the study. In the other, the same woman was dressed in a "shapeless and loose-fitting" jacket and skirt. The participants were given a quiz about the stories on the newscast and questions about the anchor's appearance.

P.S.  Another study.  And its good for less heart attacks (avoiding other physiological elements, I guess, is also good for fewer heart attacks, quite).  Dress standards is an issue.

P.P.S.  Check out this humor (originally here):

...the biggest conclusion I get from this study is that universities will throw money at anyone with an idea and a scientific procedure, no matter how predictable the results might be. With that in mind, I'm going to see if I can get funding for the following:

-- A study to examine whether people prefer pizza or Brussels sprouts.
-- A study to see if men drive faster in a Ferrari or a Ford Focus.
-- A study to find out what happens to rain when the temperature dips below 32 degrees.



tom said...

nice post but i would like to ask if BMI is a better tool to analyze obesity or Waist hip ratio?

Waist to Hip Ratio said...

I mean, if someone who was previously obese reduces their weight, does that then reduce the risk of decreased mental functioning, as there would be a decrease in the suspected problem cytokines?