YouTube and psychology

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EnPsychlopedia

Ph.D. Student | M.A. Clinical Psychology
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Hello, folks! Enjoy knowing that one of the most currently trending videos on YouTube is BvDK spreading trauma pseudoscience and saying that people who haven’t seen trauma in their lives “haven’t looked hard enough.”



On a meta note, maybe this thread can be dedicated to discussing the impact of short micro videos like this on our field, or just public forum videos in general. How are 10-min. bite sized videos, accurate or not, affecting the public perception of our field? Or even things like TED talks or “celebrity science” podcasts where the information is more about the presenter and the way it’s presented than about the quality or robustness of the product? Maybe my post here makes sense—I’m typing this on mobile during a brief work break.

Anyway, would love to hear your thoughts!

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Ughh, when will van der Kolk's reign of terror end?
 
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Ughh, when will van der Kolk's reign of terror end?
True. But also: I wonder if we’ve reached that point where sound bites and overhyped fluff pushed in popular media sources are the main drivers of popular interest in the field. Are we the new physics, with our annoying Michio Kakus bite sizing and hyping everything beyond reason?
 
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Why was this Denis Leary bit the first thing that came to mind?

NSFW of course.



EDIT: Some context: Much of Leary's bits, while crude and probably some may find offensive , and some of this public comments on these matters revolve around topics of deflecting personal responsibility for one's behavior, bad parenting, as well as over-diagnosing. Leary came from a family of firefighters , some who have died in line of duty and many firefighters experience PTSD so I could see why he's outspoken about some of these topics when it comes to this, as someone else put it, "woo woo" pop psychology nonsense.
 
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Disagree. This is great. We need to keep this up until someone convinces BVK to start doing tiktok dances.
 
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Is this more body keeps the score garbage?
Worse! It's The Body Keeps the Score boiled down into an 8-min. video presented on a massively popular "thought/idea" channel, with hundreds of thousands of views and likes
 
I don’t see this as impacting my population although they are exposed to the information, but the people I work with tend to have serious mental illness and are also from higher socio-economic status. My patients do bring this information to me and we will talk about what fits and what doesn’t. In general, society has bigger problems with how we conceptualize and treat mental health issues than this.

Just got a text from a parent of a young almost adult patient who has bipolar disorder and has been hospitalized multiple times for SI and is being seen by a PMHNP, (a bit ridiculous to think that a midlevel should operate independently as a specialist but thats another rant) and the attitude is let’s see how you’re doing next month. Tried to contact and coordinate with this guy and had in the past, but he never responded to texts or calls. Next stop will be the hospital where the kid will get further behind in school. School is also toxic for this kid for a variety of reasons and she was asking about returning to residential treatment because that would be safer for her, but those places tend to be pretty toxic and run by underqualified and undereducated devotees of pop psychology and worse.
Argggh!
 
I don’t see this as impacting my population although they are exposed to the information, but the people I work with tend to have serious mental illness and are also from higher socio-economic status. My patients do bring this information to me and we will talk about what fits and what doesn’t. In general, society has bigger problems with how we conceptualize and treat mental health issues than this.

Just got a text from a parent of a young almost adult patient who has bipolar disorder and has been hospitalized multiple times for SI and is being seen by a PMHNP, (a bit ridiculous to think that a midlevel should operate independently as a specialist but thats another rant) and the attitude is let’s see how you’re doing next month. Tried to contact and coordinate with this guy and had in the past, but he never responded to texts or calls. Next stop will be the hospital where the kid will get further behind in school. School is also toxic for this kid for a variety of reasons and she was asking about returning to residential treatment because that would be safer for her, but those places tend to be pretty toxic and run by underqualified and undereducated devotees of pop psychology and worse.
Argggh!
My area of work is psychosis, FEP, and prodromal risk state research, so I also am spared the majority of this woo woo trauma and dissociation stuff in my daily work life--however, a significant secondary passion of mine is combating pseudoscience (esp. psychology-related pseudoscience) and misinformation (a la Lilienfeld, may he rest in peace)…so I just cannot help myself when I see stuff like this. I have, however, started seeing the cult of trauma trickle beyond just the usual turf of trauma woo and blaming all depression/anxiety/SUDs/personality disorders on trauma and into "ADHD, psychosis, you name it--all are caused by trauma!"

I worry deeply about the ramifications of Internet accessibility on misinformation proliferation. We had a Satanic Panic driven by trauma and dissociation woo, and that ruined so many lives and spread like a virus even before the ability to spread information at near-light speed...what will come of all of this digging for trauma now, in the age of soundbite ideas and moral panics spread by opportunist conspiracy theories ("the gay agenda," "Pizzagate," "Epstein pedophile ring")? Scary.
 
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My area of work is psychosis, FEP, and prodromal risk state research, so I also am spared the majority of this woo woo trauma and dissociation stuff in my daily work life--however, a significant secondary passion of mine is combating pseudoscience (esp. psychology-related pseudoscience) and misinformation (a la Lilienfeld, may he rest in peace)…so I just cannot help myself when I see stuff like this. I have, however, started seeing the cult of trauma trickle beyond just the usual turf of trauma woo and blaming all depression/anxiety/SUDs/personality disorders on trauma and into "ADHD, psychosis, you name it--all are caused by trauma!"

I worry deeply about the ramifications of Internet accessibility on misinformation proliferation. We had a Satanic Panic driven by trauma and dissociation woo, and that ruined so many lives and spread like a virus even before the ability to spread information at near-light speed...what will come of all of this digging for trauma now, in the age of soundbite ideas and moral panics spread by opportunist conspiracy theories ("the gay agenda," "Pizzagate," "Epstein pedophile ring")? Scary.
Not sure what the gay agenda conspiracy theory is and pizzagate never got much traction as far as I ever saw probably since it’s obviously more of a viral joke than an actual belief, but are you saying Epstein and his pals having sex with young and vulnerable women is some kind of fringe conspiracy theory?
 
Not sure what the gay agenda conspiracy theory is and pizzagate never got much traction as far as I ever saw probably since it’s obviously more of a viral joke than an actual belief, but are you saying Epstein and his pals having sex with young and vulnerable women is some kind of fringe conspiracy theory?
That there was some extensive sex trafficking ring that extended deeply into political figures who “had Epstein offed to keep him quiet” is absolutely a conspiracy theory. Clearly Epstein and his lady were guilty of trafficking and abusing women, but to go beyond this and into “all the politicians and Bill Gates were flying to Epstein’s island to have sex with underage girls” is a conspiracy theory, yes. He was a rich weirdo who knew lots of famous people and probably got off on taking pics with them—some of them probably had some idea that he was a creep but tolerated him for the purpose of getting their hands on his monetary donations, but I don’t for one second take it seriously when people say “he didn’t kill himself, he was silenced.”

As for the “gay agenda,” perhaps calling it a conspiracy theory is loose language but there are tons of folks who think that schools and popular media are “grooming kids to become gay” or “teaching kids graphic information about sex (so let’s ban this one book that ‘just happens to have LGBTQ content’).”

I’m not sure I agree that Pizzagate is confined to an internet meme. There was a very real instance of a very real man storming that restaurant with a gun looking for child trafficking victims, and public panic over child trafficking has exploded in the days since Pizzagate became a thing. QAnon was based around the idea that Trump was secretly fighting to expose and persecute deep state child sexual predators and then there was that very real wave of paranoia over children being trafficked through furniture sales on Wayfair and Walmart websites. So I deeply worry about the potential for these “we must look for trauma in therapy and dig it out even when it isn’t apparent” therapists using highly suggestive techniques to recreate the Satanic Panic—just with more of a “my public school teachers groomed me” or “when I was a kid I was trafficked” flavor rather than a “Satanic” one. I see lots of parallels, personally, and worry about the capacity for harm when these culture war trends meld with the proliferation power of the internet.
 
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I’m afraid to say this because I don’t want to get into a political debate, but this seem a little conspiracy minded in one direction. Kind of reminds me a little of the fundamental attribution error. On the side one tends to agree with, one looks at the more rational middle ground and on the other side, one looks at the more extreme perspectives. This is clearly exacerbated by social media algorithms.
 
I’m afraid to say this because I don’t want to get into a political debate, but this seem a little conspiracy minded in one direction. Kind of reminds me a little of the fundamental attribution error. On the side one tends to agree with, one looks at the more rational middle ground and on the other side, one looks at the more extreme perspectives. This is clearly exacerbated by social media algorithms.
I will respectfully disagree, but also respect the desire not to get into a political debate. I will just say from personal experience (yes, anecdotal) of folks I know back home in the rural South, these are not fringe views in some areas of the country. Perhaps my estimation of their prevalence is exacerbated by social media--totally a fair critique, but neither was panic over Satanic ritual abuse ever more than a very vocal minority folks (and yet a minority of hundreds of millions of folks can lead to many, many ruined lives). Anyway, thanks for engaging! I will take the implied advice to ease off social media seriously haha. My holidays will be far happier that way! Also, Happy Holidays to you and all others here on SDN!
 
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The algorithm is funneling me Asmongold videos now which is nice because he just talks about video games and stays away from the political.
He is pretty political in spurts. I used to follow him back in the day, but fell off. He'll still pop up on my timeline from time to time when one of his hot takes goes viral.
 
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On a meta note, maybe this thread can be dedicated to discussing the impact of short micro videos like this on our field, or just public forum videos in general. How are 10-min. bite sized videos, accurate or not, affecting the public perception of our field? Or even things like TED talks or “celebrity science” podcasts where the information is more about the presenter and the way it’s presented than about the quality or robustness of the product? Maybe my post here makes sense—I’m typing this on mobile during a brief work break.
Like most things, there's a double-edged sword component, yeah?

On one hand, it's increasing awareness about mental health and can help reduce the stigma related to mental health-related services. It makes it more digestible than reading a whole book/multiple articles and can get people more invested/interested in the field. Before I go on and on: Bite-sized videos make the field more approachable.

On the other hand, damn. You have misinformation that can spread like wildfire. With the abundance of information available, this can make the field TOO approachable, making it appear that individuals can self-diagnose and "figure it out on their own." This is harmful. (A personal pet peeve is when people misuse and/or weaponize 'therapy-speak')

I lean to the side of optimism that it overall helps more than harms. The negative parts are just broadcasted more loudly.
 
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I think my biggest concern lies with the credentialed professionals getting really loose with what they involve themselves with for clout. There is one very controversial youtuber who has a psychologist on their show regularly. It gets very uncomfortable very quickly.
 
I think my biggest concern lies with the credentialed professionals getting really loose with what they involve themselves with for clout. There is one very controversial youtuber who has a psychologist on their show regularly. It gets very uncomfortable very quickly.
I've grown annoyed/uncomfortable with the number of therapists/psychologists who "analyze" media, e.g., "Real life couples therapist analyzes sitcom couples!" or "Psychiatrist reviews film psychopaths for accuracy." These range from "Ok, correcting media stereotypes about a mental disorder is great, this video is neat!" to "Ugh this person is clearly not an expert in this and is spreading outright falsehoods."

On the other hand, YouTube offers tons of fantastic talks by/interviews with E. Loftus, S. Hupp, S. Lilienfeld, et al. which are unyielding in their consistent high quality, but which tend to be less accessible and definitely not "bite sized."
 
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Interestingly, a lot of YouTube is moving toward long-form content because it's more favored by the algorithm. Instead of highly condensed, very edited videos, there has been a desire by viewers to be in spaces that feel organic and authentic. I'll be curious what that does to psychotherapy content.
 
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That there was some extensive sex trafficking ring that extended deeply into political figures who “had Epstein offed to keep him quiet” is absolutely a conspiracy theory. Clearly Epstein and his lady were guilty of trafficking and abusing women, but to go beyond this and into “all the politicians and Bill Gates were flying to Epstein’s island to have sex with underage girls” is a conspiracy theory, yes. He was a rich weirdo who knew lots of famous people and probably got off on taking pics with them—some of them probably had some idea that he was a creep but tolerated him for the purpose of getting their hands on his monetary donations, but I don’t for one second take it seriously when people say “he didn’t kill himself, he was silenced.”

As for the “gay agenda,” perhaps calling it a conspiracy theory is loose language but there are tons of folks who think that schools and popular media are “grooming kids to become gay” or “teaching kids graphic information about sex (so let’s ban this one book that ‘just happens to have LGBTQ content’).”

I’m not sure I agree that Pizzagate is confined to an internet meme. There was a very real instance of a very real man storming that restaurant with a gun looking for child trafficking victims, and public panic over child trafficking has exploded in the days since Pizzagate became a thing. QAnon was based around the idea that Trump was secretly fighting to expose and persecute deep state child sexual predators and then there was that very real wave of paranoia over children being trafficked through furniture sales on Wayfair and Walmart websites. So I deeply worry about the potential for these “we must look for trauma in therapy and dig it out even when it isn’t apparent” therapists using highly suggestive techniques to recreate the Satanic Panic—just with more of a “my public school teachers groomed me” or “when I was a kid I was trafficked” flavor rather than a “Satanic” one. I see lots of parallels, personally, and worry about the capacity for harm when these culture war trends meld with the proliferation power of the internet.
Look into how he got rich, how he bought his apartment, etc., dude was def a dirt collector, sommelier, and black mail curator.
 
Like most things, there's a double-edged sword component, yeah?

On one hand, it's increasing awareness about mental health and can help reduce the stigma related to mental health-related services. It makes it more digestible than reading a whole book/multiple articles and can get people more invested/interested in the field. Before I go on and on: Bite-sized videos make the field more approachable.

On the other hand, damn. You have misinformation that can spread like wildfire. With the abundance of information available, this can make the field TOO approachable, making it appear that individuals can self-diagnose and "figure it out on their own." This is harmful. (A personal pet peeve is when people misuse and/or weaponize 'therapy-speak')

I lean to the side of optimism that it overall helps more than harms. The negative parts are just broadcasted more loudly.
I think there is evidence that awareness interventions are increasing mental health issues in teens.

 
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Look into how he got rich, how he bought his apartment, etc., dude was def a dirt collector, sommelier, and black mail curator.
Certainly a rich weirdo and con artist, and I don't doubt that there were people who maybe had inklings of ideas about him. Hell, it would not surprise me if a couple of well-knowns here and there had more than inklings. That said, I do not buy into the idea that everyone ever photoed with him or who ever attended a meeting with him or chilled out on his jet was in on some large-scale sex trafficking ring, nor do I believe he was forcibly offed in prison. Dude was a whack-a-doodle who had tons of money to contribute to causes/campaigns/etc. and I'm sure he rubbed elbows with lots of folks--doesn't reek of anything other than those folks tolerating the presence of someone with big $$. You'd be hard pressed to convince me that more than maybe a dozen or so people could be deep in the know about something like that and keep it secret for so long--we all know secrets leak like termite-infested ships.
 
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