We’re Wired To Gossip - Deepstash

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Gossiping can make us look bad - but it may have evolved to help us bond with each other

We’re Wired To Gossip

People's names trigger the brain in a unique way so you can recall information about them. Gossip works as training for the information gathering capacities of the brain.

Research also found that people were much better at processing information about people they had just met if they had large social groups. By talking with and about people more often, they were using those parts of their brains regularly.

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Policing Behavior

Gossiping is a good way of identifying friends and foes. We are either judge, jury or executioner when we gossip — and we use the information we cull to keep immoral influences at arm's length.

Research indicates that people who witnessed immoral behavior feel better after gossiping about it to people who might have been affected. They are helping to spread the news, and therefore raise the possibility that the person in question is punished.

Keeping Us Safe

We ensure our well-being by exchanging information about the world around us (and the potential dangers it contains) with as many people as possible.

Building Social Bonds

Gossip is a key social skill that helps ensure our healthy integration into human society. 

Gossiping with somebody is a way of bringing people closer within your social group, checking that they share your views, and bonding over shared positions and judgements. The people you gossip most with, therefore, are the ones with whom you're the closest.

The Bad Reputation

Generally, gossiping has a bad reputation. It is called the faceless demon that breaks hearts and ruins careers. It is also termed as the three-pronged tongue that kills the teller, listener, and the person being gossiped about, all at once.

Facts About Gossip

Gossip is malicious only 3 to 4 percent of times and seems to bring people together, as when two people talk about a third one, having a common 'adversary' creates a bond between them.

The Good Side of Gossiping

Gossip can make us better people, according to some researchers.

  • Positive gossip inspires people while negative gossip makes people proud of themselves.
  • People learn about themselves through the grapevine.
  • Many people decide to reform themselves because of the gossip they have heard.
Being Relatable

Knowing that others have flaws makes them more relatable. It makes them feel more likable and less intimidating, as they are just as vulnerable to the harsh realities of life as you.

Empowered By Having Personal Information

When we gossip, we gain “social capital” -- a secret weapon of sorts over those around us.

Even if we have no intention of using information in a harmful manner, simply having the information is satisfying.

Feeling Accepted

It is a human trait to desire companionship and relationships so we value our acceptance and social placement. When we know things about others, it makes us feel included.

Participating in the ongoing conversations your peers have is an element of your favorable reception in the herd.