I just read an article on WIRED about neuromarketing applied to cinema. Here are some excerpts (the highlights are mine):
The filmmakers will be able to track precisely which sequences/scenes excite, emotionally engage or lose the viewer’s interest based on what regions of the brain are activated. From that info a director can edit, re-shoot an actor’s bad performance, adjust a score, pump up visual effects and apply any other changes to improve or replace the least compelling scenes.
(…) This technology doesn’t brainwash anyone. A moviegoer’s brain will reveal their personal preferences, while creators will be able pay attention to those important details to produce better films and know how to effectively market them.
I consider neuroscience to be one of the most interesting fields of our time, but the practice suggested by this article bothers me.
If not “brainwashing” (although at a long term that is practically what it is), when the mind itself begins to determine the world around it the result seems to be some kind of mental short-circuit. It’s no surprise that this strategy would be adopted by the entertainment industry (whether we like it or not, neuromarketing exists for a while now, helping us identify our deepest needs).
I just hope that this kind of approach doesn’t turn out to be a common practice in art and culture. When I go to the movies the last thing I want to see is what I expect.See more all.