Cringe TV triggers pain response in brain
Writing in the `PLoS ONE` journal, the researchers say it appears we are feeling their "social pain" for them – or empathising with their misfortune. And, the phenomenon isn`t just restricted to their lab.
Dr Christopher Cohrs, of Queens University, Belfast, said: "Worldwide, millions of people gather in groups to watch TV shows such as Pop Idol and America`s Next Top Model and collectively enjoy witnessing plights or mishaps happening to the candidates and perceive "vicarious embarrassment" or "embarrassment by proxy".
"The appeal of observing others` plights exploited via television or internet seems to be present regardless of whether the person in focus realises the mishap or not."