Does Mediated Social Touch Succesfully Approximate Natural Social Touch?

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstract

Abstract

Mediated social touch (MST) devices are upcoming. To date, experiments
aimed at demonstrating whether effects of naturalistic social touch can be replicated with MST provide mixed findings. A possible explanation could be a lack of realism of current haptic displays in combination with not sufficiently taking contextual factors of social touch into account. Using a qualitative approach, our study aims to gain more insight into the influence of contextual effects on the experience of an MST, by means of exploring female participants’ experiences of receiving an MST from a male stranger versus their romantic partner. Our findings show that simultaneously feeling and seeing the touch act performed on a corporeal object can be beneficial for the MST experience. However, our findings also demonstrate that it is not self-evident to regard MST as phenomenologically equal to natural social touch, as it often fails to meet the expectations people have formed based on naturalistic social touch.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2020
EventAnnual International CyberPsychology, CyberTherapy & Social Networking Conference : VIRTUAL Edition - Milan, Italy
Duration: 13 Sep 202115 Sep 2021
https://www.interactivemediainstitute.com/cypsy25/

Conference

ConferenceAnnual International CyberPsychology, CyberTherapy & Social Networking Conference : VIRTUAL Edition
Abbreviated titleCYPSY25
Country/TerritoryItaly
CityMilan
Period13/09/2115/09/21
Internet address

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