Researchers in Boston today announced that a person has had their mind changed by comments that they read online. Researchers have long theorized that this was possible, but this is the first time that they have actually confirmed in the wild that it has happened.
The person in question, Janet Blanding of St. Paul, Minnesota, said that she was as surprised as anyone when her mind was changed.
“I was on this news site and saw this article on Obamacare. I figured I’d look through the comments and then post a snarky response to one I disagreed with. But as I read the opposing comments, I started to think, ‘Hmm, that’s interesting. I didn’t know that. Maybe they have a point.’ The more I read, the more I started to change my mind. It was weird.”
Blanding said that she found herself thinking about the issue for the next day, and then on the third day woke up and her mind was changed.
The researchers insisted on documentary evidence to confirm the change of mind. Blanding produced several emails, comments and tweets with her original opinion on the Affordable Care Act, and then later communications with the opposite opinion. Researchers confirmed their authenticity.
Researchers found Blanding by doing a search for “I used to think that, but after reading more I’ve changed my mind.” A comment from Blanding was the only result that came up on the search.