Many, many of us are paranoid

People are paranoid, Run! They're coming!

Roland Piquepaille keeps track of how new technologies are modifying our way of life at Technology Trends and found a new use for Virtual Reality in the lab.

What are paranoid thoughts? How is paranoia studied?

“Paranoid thoughts are often triggered by ambiguous events such as people looking in one’s direction or hearing laughter in a room but it is very difficult to recreate such social interactions. Virtual reality allows us to do just that, to look at how different people interpret exactly the same social situation. It is a uniquely powerful method to detect those liable to misinterpret other people.”

In this King’s College study using Virtual Reality to mimic social interaction, the results showed that 40% of us are paranoid.

Piquepaille reports, “If you don’t know how common are paranoid thoughts, here is an answer. “In one recent survey, 70% of people said that they had, at some time, experienced the feeling that people were deliberately trying to harm or upset them in some way.”

Think about this. If 40% of us are generally paranoid and 70% of us have ‘sensed’ others are attempting to harm us, how does this affect our daily lives, our society, and our political choices? It’s an important matter, very seldom admitted amongst each other, or for that matter admitted to ourselves. Day to day we pay attention to what scares us, but not to fear itself. Our fearful nature is poorly understood yet fuels the greater part of our budget and our human relations.