People’s memory for Facebook posts is stronger than memory for human faces

People’s memory for Facebook posts is strikingly stronger than their memory for human faces or sentences from books, according to a new study.

Try to remember a line from the last book you read. Or, if you’re not a big reader, the face of the last new person you met. Now try to remember your significant other’s last Facebook status update.

According to a new study published in the journal Memory & Cognition, our brains may be more adequately wired to remember status updates and tweets rather than snippets from novels or faces. Subjects in the study were one and a half times more likely to remember posts than sentences from a novel and almost two and a half times more likely than to remember faces.

The findings shed light on how our memories favour natural, spontaneous writing over polished, edited content, and could have wider implications for the worlds of education, communications and advertising.