10 April 2014

"Autonomous sensory meridian response" (ASMR)

I first learned about ASMR yesterday while driving my car listening to a segment of This American Life.  It's fascinating. 
Autonomous sensory meridian response (ASMR) is a neologism for a perceptual phenomenon characterized as a distinct, pleasurable tingling sensation in the head, scalp, back, or peripheral regions of the body in response to visual, auditory, tactile, olfactory, and/or cognitive stimuli. The nature and classification of the ASMR phenomenon is controversial.
For those who want to explore the subject, Act Two of the TAL podcast is mesmerizing (just click the little forward arrow below "A Tribe Called Rest."  The entire segment lasts about 15 minutes, but try it for just 3-4 minutes...).


  1. I first heard about it from http://www.skepticblog.org/2012/03/12/asmr/ (March 2012), and then there's http://www.soothetube.com/ which I browsed a little later that year.

    From 33:32 in the podcast, the speaker is apparently unaware that jewellery is the standard spelling in much of the world. That surprises me, particularly from a published author who has surely had some worldly experience.

    1. The skepticblog post is quite good, with an extended comment thread. Tx.

  2. It please me very much when I hear that things like that get a name. Well, too bad it's not actually a word.

  3. This woman is kind of the lady king of ASMR youtube videos:


    She's pretty much the best. Her voice sends me into such a pleasurable stupor.


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