WINNIPEG (CBS Cleveland) – A new study indicates that people who engage in text messaging tend to be more racist and shallow than their less technologically savvy counterparts.
Researchers at the University of Winnipeg found that young people are specifically susceptible to the trend, according to the Edmonton Journal.
The study was conducted by observing 2,300 psychology students for three years, with observations beginning during their first years of college. Participants were asked to fill out online surveys during the course of the several-year study.
Students who said they sent more than 100 text messages per day were reportedly 30 percent less likely to concern themselves with living ethical lives, researchers – including Dr. Paul Trapnell and Dr. Lisa Sinclair – were said to have observed.
On the other hand, those who said they sent 50 text messages or less were far more likely to care about living principled lives.
Researchers additionally asked some students to send text messages, talk on cell phones, or abstain from all phone activity during a lab experiment connected to the study.
Afterwards, those participants were asked to rate their approval levels of different groups of minorities – and the people who sent more text messages during the experiment also gave more generally negative ratings to different demographics than those who did not.
The brevity of modern forms of communication is said to be a contributing factor to the phenomenon.
“Ultra-brief social media like texting and Twitter encourages rapid, relatively shallow thought and consequently very frequent daily use of such media should be associated with cognitive and moral shallowness,” researchers noted, according to the Journal.