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Watching YouTube Videos Can Decrease Mental Health Prejudice by 8 Percent

Mental health problems are highly prevalent these days, but there is an unfortunate number of people that might feel prejudice towards those who are suffering from them. However, human beings have an extraordinary capacity for kindness, and something as simple as watching some YouTube videos may be enough to help remove some of this prejudice than might have been the case otherwise.

A study conducted at the University of Essex showed that just 17 minutes of watching YouTube videos made people 8% less prejudiced than might have been the case otherwise. With all of that having been said and now out of the way, it is important to note that the videos that were shown to subjects explicitly focused on mental health and the struggles that people go through because of them.

Another metric that was measured was intergroup anxiety, and this fell even more dramatically by 11% with all things having been considered and taken into account. This is a good example of parasocial relationships that form between viewers and the people they watch in videos. These relationships can be good for content creators because of the fact that this is the sort of thing that could potentially end up making viewers feel more connected to them, but reducing prejudice is also another area where it can prove useful.

10% of the people who took part in this survey actually went out and tried to help in various initiatives meant to tackle mental illnesses. Additionally, the results of the survey were made more robust when a subsequent survey conducted a week later confirmed that people still felt the same way.

YouTube has been a huge driving force in helping people to relate to one another. It allows users to submit unfiltered content onto the platform as long as it does not break any rules, and watching these videos can humanize those that many might fail to understand. While YouTube is by no means the only solution to the world’s problems, it goes to show that solving these issues might be easier than anyone would have expected.


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