Take Lots of Photos? You May Remember Less
But zooming in may boost your memory: study
By Matt Cantor, Newser User
Posted Dec 11, 2013 2:49 PM CST
Picture-taking may affect your memory.   (Shutterstock)

(Newser) – If you're busy snapping photos of an experience, you may not remember it well. So suggests a new study, which compared groups of museum tourists, one with cameras, the other without, the Guardian reports. Scientists found that those who took pictures of "each object as a whole" recalled fewer items and less about them than did those who simply observed the galleries.

"People just pull out their cameras," study author Linda Henkel tells CNN. "They just don't pay attention to what they're even looking at, like just capturing the photo is more important than actually being there." However, when people zoomed in on part of an item, they tended to remember more about the whole thing, LiveScience notes. The Guardian warns against jumping to conclusions. Subjects didn't, for instance, select what to photograph; we tend to be better at remembering what we're interested in.

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Showing 3 of 7 comments
Kbar Upit
Dec 15, 2013 10:02 AM CST
Guess I don't need to order that great new Canon camera! Bummer!
Dec 12, 2013 5:08 PM CST
Going by that study, I have some Japanese friends who might not remember a moment of their world travels, Snap, snap, click, click. Just fooling.
Dec 12, 2013 12:30 AM CST
I have a deep love for photography but have been on an extended hiatus. When I would take pictures, I would focus completely on the scene at hand, but being an active observer was emotionally distracting; I prefer the role of the passive observer, the memories feel less forced this way.