1

The title is based on @Oddthinking's very helpful comment.

From A Complete Taxonomy of Internet Chum1 published in The Awl (bold italics added by me):

Bottom Left: Deeply Psychological Body Thing: While on the surface this may scan as a Skin Thing, the regular pattern of indentations made in this woman’s legs by what appear to be frozen peas or stones are in fact designed to trigger feelings of mild discomfort/anxiety amongst sufferers of Trypophobia, a common sensitivity to regularly occurring patterns of holes in surfaces — a discomfort that perversely elicits curiosity, playing on our fixation with the frailties of our bodies and our ultimate fear of death.

Do images that "trigger feelings of mild discomfort/anxiety amongst sufferers of" trypophobia2 elicit curiosity?

Or, as @Oddthinking says: Do "patterns of holes in surfaces [act as] surprisingly good clickbait - playing on our curiosity about mildly discomforting things?"

I couldn't find evidence for or against this. Maybe this statement is random and hasn't been researched?

1 The article has been reported in Slate. The author has been reported in CBC.

2 Defined as "an intense and disproportionate fear towards holes, repetitive patterns, protrusions, etc." by Martínez-Aguayo et al..

  • 5
    This statement seems to be being interpreted out of context. The claim is not "sufferers of trypophobia wander around life being surprisingly curious about the world". It is "patterns of holes in surfaces are surprisingly good clickbait - playing on our curiosity about mildly discomforting things". – Oddthinking May 16 at 5:49
  • 4
    is the claim actually that trypophobia specifically includes curiosity about holey things, or isn't it rather that pics that make us uncomfortable also make us curious? – bukwyrm May 16 at 9:34
  • 1
  • 3
    @fredsbend and yellowcake isn't a cake... if you replace 'trypophobia' with 'disgusted reaction at the sight of holey material', it is a) completely natural to use in a sentence, and b) interesting as to it's origin and neurophysiologcal/evolutionary background – bukwyrm May 16 at 14:19
  • 2
    To be honest, this article isn't even pop science, it's just a tongue-in-cheek explanation of how chumboxes work. Do we really want to challenge and discuss random, casual remarks from four-year-old pop articles? I fail to see a notable claim here. The fact that the article (but not the claim) is mentioned on another website, and that the author is quoted on a third, doesn't make this particular claim any more relevant. Plus, the claim from the current title ("Trypophobia is good clickbait") isn't even in the article, but is based on @Oddthinking's comment. – Schmuddi May 16 at 23:02

You must log in to answer this question.

Browse other questions tagged .