Thursday, January 28, 2010

Moving on - past the fauxtrage and buzz

Alright Ladies and Gents -

Even though some PR intern at ITV is working overtime to get it out there, I'm going to let all of the fauxtrage (that's faux-outrage) surrounding the new reality series Popstar to Operastar fall by the way side.

In addition, all of the ... uhm ... buzz [insert eye roll here] around Fort Worth Opera's pitch to the National Association of Television Program Executives of a "docu-soap" surrounding the backstage antics is going to get left - backstage.

Moving on.

Today, I'd like to focus on something a little more scientific. Yes. I said it. Scientific.

Did you know that, according to a recently published study, you can tell someone's political affiliation by looking at their headshot? Truly...

According to a study published in the January 18 issue of PLoS One, subjects were able to accurately identify candidates from the 2004 and 2006 U.S. Senate elections as either Democrats or Republicans based on black & white headshots.

PS - for those who aren't aware, a 'headshot' is a professionally taken (we hope) photograph of yourself which is often used for professional purposes.

And, get this friendlies, subjects were even able to correctly identify college students as belonging to Democratic or Republican clubs based on their yearbook photos.

A little spooky, huh? Here's how, from
To investigate the basis of these judgments, subjects were asked to rate photos of faces on a seven-point scale assessing personality traits such as assertiveness, maturity, likeability and trustworthiness. Subjects consistently associated Democrats with warmth (likeable and trustworthy) and Republicans with power (dominant and mature). These findings were independent of the gender of the person in the photo.
So, I wonder what my headshot says about me? Yes, that's me to the left... positioned appropriately given my obvious political affiliation.

Is this likeable and trustworthy ... or dominant and mature?

Alright ... alright - perhaps none of the above is more appropriate.

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