Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Virtual superheroes more helpful in real world, too

Date:
January 30, 2013
Source:
Public Library of Science
Summary:
Having virtual super-powers in a game may incite people to better behavior in the real world, according to new research.

Virtual child after being found and saved.
Credit: Robin S. Rosenberg, Shawnee L. Baughman, Jeremy N. Bailenson. Virtual Superheroes: Using Superpowers in Virtual Reality to Encourage Prosocial Behavior. PLoS ONE, 2013; 8 (1): e55003 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0055003

Having virtual super-powers in a game may incite people to better behavior in the real world, according to research published January 30 in the open access journal PLOS ONE by Robin Rosenberg and colleagues from Stanford University's Virtual Human Interaction Lab.

Related Articles


Participants in this study were placed in a virtual environment and either given the power of flight or rode as passengers in a helicopter. They were then assigned one of two tasks: help find a missing diabetic child or tour a virtual city. The researchers explain that regardless of which task they performed, "Participants who were given the power to fly like Superman in virtual reality were more helpful afterward, out of virtual reality, compared to participants who were passengers in a helicopter in virtual reality."

The researchers suggest that embodying a superpower in virtual reality may prime players to 'think like superheroes' and thus facilitate subsequent helpful behavior in the real world. Alternately, the authors also suggest that participants who could fly in the game may have felt like more active participants than those who passively sat in the helicopter while performing tasks, and this more active involvement may have induced their subsequent behavior.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Public Library of Science. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Robin S. Rosenberg, Shawnee L. Baughman, Jeremy N. Bailenson. Virtual Superheroes: Using Superpowers in Virtual Reality to Encourage Prosocial Behavior. PLoS ONE, 2013; 8 (1): e55003 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0055003

Cite This Page:

Public Library of Science. "Virtual superheroes more helpful in real world, too." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 30 January 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/01/130130184151.htm>.
Public Library of Science. (2013, January 30). Virtual superheroes more helpful in real world, too. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 31, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/01/130130184151.htm
Public Library of Science. "Virtual superheroes more helpful in real world, too." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/01/130130184151.htm (accessed October 31, 2014).

Share This



More Computers & Math News

Friday, October 31, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Protests Stall Hungary's Internet Tax

Protests Stall Hungary's Internet Tax

Reuters - Business Video Online (Oct. 31, 2014) Hungary will shelve plans to introduce a tax on internet data traffic that has generated big protests over the past week. But as Amy Pollock reports the controversial issue hasn’t gone away entirely. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Samsung's Incredible Shrinking Smartphone Profits

Samsung's Incredible Shrinking Smartphone Profits

Reuters - Business Video Online (Oct. 30, 2014) The world's top mobile maker is under severe pressure, delivering a 60 percent drop in Q3 profit as its handset business struggles. Turning it around may not prove easy, says Reuters' Jon Gordon. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ban On Wearable Cameras In Movie Theaters Surprises No One

Ban On Wearable Cameras In Movie Theaters Surprises No One

Newsy (Oct. 30, 2014) The Motion Picture Association of America and the National Association of Theatre Owners now prohibit wearable cameras such as Google Glass. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Spain's New 'Google Tax' Makes News Feeds Pay For Links

Spain's New 'Google Tax' Makes News Feeds Pay For Links

Newsy (Oct. 30, 2014) Spanish lawmakers have passed new IP rules requiring aggregators to pay for linking to news sites, following a broader trend across the E.U. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

More Coverage


Virtual Superpowers Encourage Real-World Empathy

Jan. 31, 2013 Giving test subjects Superman-like flight in a virtual reality simulator makes them more likely to exhibit altruistic behavior in real life, researchers ... read more

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Space & Time

Matter & Energy

Computers & Math

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins