Take a Picture, It'll Last Longer

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We all know the phrase, but did you know that it turns out, the idiom is correct. You can recall certain instances in your life where you know exactly what you were doing and who you were with, for example many of us know what we were doing when we watched the Twin Towers fall, I'm sure. When an emotional event really struck you and made this memory extremely vivid for you, it allowed you to recall details of it years later. This phenomenon is known as Flashbulb memory. This "snapshot" of your moment in time, as it turns out, isn't always as correct as a picture could be, despite how positive of the event you are. Our friend from the vlogbrothers explains an interesting little tidbit about a study of inaccuracies of in our memories here:

So there you have it, next time you're recalling a really vivid memory, you might not be 100%. It's a good thing we have camera phones now, so you can capture the moment, so you don't have to rely solely on your memory.

13 Comments

This video was awesome, and really makes you think about your memories. I can totally see how looking back, a story or memory might "evolve" and change each time you tell it, yet you believe it to be the right story everytime! I think the flashbulb memory is really intriguing because at first when I read about it, I was kind of shocked people would change their stories so much but then I started to realize that I was victim to doing the same thing involving emotional stories as well! Great points made!

Your blog and the video had interesting facts about memories, especially "flashbulb memory" because you'd think that a memory that's vivid and detailed would be correct but it can actually be distorted.

Very interesting. Before this class, I never really thought much about this. However, now that we're learning about flashbulb memories and what you discussed here reminds me of some personal experiences. There have been times when I remember something important that happened and someone who was also there remembers it much differently. Even when we think we could never forget an important experience, our memory can still deceive us.

The title of your blog was actually what got my attention because people are always saying that and i never really knew if it was true or not but reading your blog and then watching the video made me realize that yes it is true! I can recall certain things in my life from when i was younger just by looking at a picture. Its amazing how much just a simple picture can allow us to remember!

The title of your blog is what actually drew me in because I have heard people use that saying a lot and would always wonder if it was actually true! Then reading your blog and watching the video did confirm it was true! its amazing how much we can remember just by looking at a simple picture or hearing about an event like you mentioned.

The first thing that came to my mind as well was 9/11, because I can remember almost all the details, but not 100%. This ability can be very helpful especially in situations when details are needed. The video helped as well because of the in depth details that he talked about. If only memory wasn't distorted, our history as a whole would be really interesting. Good job!

The points you made in your blog and video were very interesting. I also think that people have the tendency to remember things the way they want to remember it, which alters their memories of certain moments in their lives slightly. I am also fascinated by the capacity of our memories even though they are not perfect.

I love you the video that you posted in your blog; it's super entertaining and it really emphasized on flashbulb memories, which I find to be incredibly interesting. I sometimes feel as though I am odd because I rarely (to my knowledge) confuse my memories or make them up. When I don't remember something, I simply don't remember and I don't try to trigger the memory. On the other hand, when I remember something, I remember pretty vividly. For example, I was 15 when Michael Jackson died. I heard the news on the radio, sitting in my exboyfriends car, stopped at the street light of McKnight and 10th St. It was about 6 because the sun was setting. He then called his mom to tell her (she loves Micheal Jackson).
You did a great job compiling this blog. Good job :)

The potential inaccuracies of our flashbulb memories is remarkable! It is strange that we can be so completely sure of the way something happened, only to be completely wrong... This has me thinking back on big events in my life and wondering if they actually happened the way I recall them! The weaknesses of the human mind and memory emphasize how important it is for us to record our history in ways other than just our memories! I think a great example of this is looking back on old journals and being surprised by the contrast of what you happened and what you remember, and the things you may have simply left out of your memory!

I really like your title, it is cool. I totally agree with your on the flashbulb memory because I had it several times before. When something really interested happened, i just cannot forget the vivid image and it likely stores in my head and cannot get rid of it.

This video makes me realize how many of my memories especially as a child are very vague and have little to no detail. I can see how future life experiences can affect the way in which we percieve our memories and how we look at ourselves when we do think about them.

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This page contains a single entry by Chelsie Webb published on March 4, 2012 11:11 PM.

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