Loving looking at yourself during a Zoom is not necessarily narcissistic

No need to hide it, almost everyone does it. Whether in full FaceTime or during a videoconference meeting, many have already lent themselves to the “Zoom Vanity”. This very recent concept, which consists of not looking at others and being satisfied with yourself by staring back at your camera, inevitably emerged at the start of the pandemic when classes, interviews and meetings shifted from face-to-face to distancing.

A new study from Carson College of Business from Washington State University analyzed this behavior. Published in the journal Computers in Human Behavior, she revealed that many people prefer to stare at each other in these virtual meetings than to stare at others. In the summer and fall of 2020, 80 professionals and 350 students were questioned on this subject. The questions were about “The nature of their work or class meetings and the feelings that [les participants] were experiencing on themselves “, mentions the study.

A story of self-confidence

“Most people think that seeing each other in virtual meetings makes the overall experience worse, but that’s not what our data shows”comments Kristine Kuhn, author of the published study and associate professor at Carson College of Business.

The researcher found that people with great self-confidence were not particularly used to fixing their reflection. Conversely, those in lack of confidence spend most of the videoconference looking at each other in the return camera. What to suggest that the “Zoom Vanity” is not so much a trait of narcissism as a way for the timid to avoid confrontation.

Other factors positively or negatively influence the use of the Zoom application. For example, if the meeting host forces participants to turn on their cameras, some people may, due to their lack of self-confidence, feel uncomfortable, the study author reports.

“A manager running a meeting would probably prefer everyone to have their cameras on, obviously. At the same time, he should know that there is probably a cost to this and that it is not ideal for everyone ”, note Kristine Kuhn.

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Research focusing only on the satisfaction of seeing one’s reflection does not provide any information on how people feel about videoconferencing in general when telecommuting. The author of the study – which also involved a limited number of participants (430) – invites her colleagues to conduct further research on the subject.


Source: Slate.fr by www.slate.fr.

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