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In love? Drop an e-mail and woo your girl

Wed, Sep 02, 2015, 02:37 PM
New York, Sep 2: If Cupid's arrow has hit you finally, it
is still better to express your feelings via an e-mail than
leaving a voice message or a WhatsApp post with the girl
you are in love with, says an interesting study.

According to researchers from Indiana University (IU), in
this digital age, an email can be more effective in
expressing romantic feelings than other platforms.

“The bottom line is that email is much better when you want
to convey some information that you want someone to think
about,” said Alan R Dennis, from IU's Kelley School of

Using psycho-physiological measures from 72 college-age
people, Dennis and co-author Taylor M. Wells found that
people who sent romantic emails were more emotionally
aroused and used stronger and more thoughtful language than
those who left voicemails.

“When writing romantic emails, senders consciously or
subconsciously added more positive content to their
messages, perhaps to compensate for the medium's inability
to convey vocal tone," Dennis and Wells wrote.

Email enables senders to modify the content as messages are
composed to ensure they are crafted to the needs of the

Voicemail lacks this feature.

A sender records a voicemail in a single take, and it can
be sent or discarded and re-recorded, but not edited.

“Thus, senders engage with email messages longer and may
think about the task more deeply than when leaving
voicemails. This extra processing may increase arousal,”
the authors noted.

Previous research had suggested that email and text chat
are considered poor for communicating emotion.

The study also demonstrated that the medium used can shape
the content of the message. Senders of utilitarian messages
sent less positive emails than voicemails for the same
communication task.

However, when composing romantic messages, senders included
the most positive and most arousing emotional content in
emails and the least positive and least arousing emotional
content in voicemails.

These findings, however, do not suggest that face-to-face
meetings, personal phone calls and other direct forms of
communications aren't as useful.

The research has been accepted for publication in the
journal Computers in Human Behavior.
Agency: IANS

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