Monday, January 31, 2011

The Difference Between Intentional and Incidental Triggers

Just like the two recognised types of ASMR, type A and B, it seems as though we are becoming conscious of the fact that there is perhaps more than one type of trigger. You have an incidental trigger, and an intentional trigger.

So what exactly would qualify as an intentional trigger video compared to an incidental one?

If you have to look at the ones that cause incidental triggers – the most popular ones on the ASMR playlist – you have to think then that these would not be intentional triggers. These are mainly incidental trigger videos. They haven’t been created with ASMR in mind, and were made for other purposes. Experiencers such as us just happen to get that familiar tingling feeling while watching them.

I would argue that almost every trigger out there is an incidental one. Because something as mundane as someone flipping through a magazine or reading a newspaper would have little to no effect on most people; it does have quite an effect on an experiencer.

This presents a problem, as firstly, it still has to be decided what an intentional trigger video is, and how you’d go about making one. If we think about it, we can come up with the following criteria so far:

- I reckon it has to be crafted with ASMR in mind.
- Likely would be created by a community member, or supporter of sorts.
- It would perhaps focus on one or more of the many triggers reported by the community, such as the list on my article on HubPages.
- More than one asmer would actually have to experience ASMR for it to be labelled as intentional. This is tricky seeing as what might work for one person will not work for another. We know this all to well. Some people enjoy digital media, such as watching YouTube, whilst others do not gain any benefit from doing so.
I think that is how basic it really is, seeing as it’s like I said: when you think about it, likely most if not all triggers are incidental in nature. So even if a video in created with the intention of stimulating the sensation, it’s likely still going to be categorised as an incidental trigger. It’s probably much easier to class something as intentional if it works only for you.

What do you think? Can we add anything more to the checklist when it comes to categorizing intentional triggers? Feel free to chime in, in the comments.

1 comment:

  1. I have been reading your blog for a while but haven't commented yet. I have experienced ASMR all throughout my life and consider myself affected in real life through sounds, physical contact as well as through digital media. I have recently been thinking about this topic because of my interest in the whispering community in relation to ASMR. Many of my triggers are soft spoken people, accents, whispering and ambient white noise and these videos often combine all of these aspects. The makers and viewers of many of the whisper videos usually describe the videos as 'relaxation videos' or for aiding in insomnia. My theory is that many of these could actually be made for and by people who experience ASMR and they maybe are at a loss for words to describe the feeling and simply categorize it as 'relaxing'. On the other hand, there have been a few video posters I have come across who have referenced ASMR/head tingling or have left similar comments.

    There definitely seems to be a blurred line between incidental and intentional videos. For example unboxing videos which are made for the visuals and sounds to relax the viewers instead of just to show them something that they got in the mail. I find that in my experience it doesn't really matter whether the person intentionally or incidentally made them, to how it affects my triggers. But it definitely is an interesting topic in relation to a community that seems to be growing.


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