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THE MOST RELAXING COMMUNITY

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ASMR THE MOST RELAXING COMMUNITY


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CON _TENTS 9

THAT TINGLING SENSATION

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THE WHISPERERS

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RELAXING COMMUNITY


1.THAT TINGLING SENSA _TION

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A U T O N O M O U S

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Turns out, there is a phenomenon knows as ASMR or a more colloquial word “braingasm�. It is characterized by a distinct feeling of pleasure from tingling, vibrations in the head, neck, back and other parts of the human body caused by visual, auditory, and (or) cognitive stimuli. According to WikiPedia, online discussions by groups such as the Society of Sensationalists formed in 2008 on Yahoo! and The Unnamed Feeling blog created in 2010 by Andrew MacMuiris aimed to provide a community for learning more about the sensation by sharing ideas and personal experiences. Some earlier names for ASMR in these discussion groups included attention induced head orgasm, attention induced euphoria, and attention induced observant euphoria. Most of ASMR-experiencers have started out with watching telsells, make-up tutorials, foreign language or painting lessons on YouTube in search for certain type of relaxing voice and calm manner of speaking.

S E N S O R Y


M E R I D I A N

R E S P O N S E

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TRIGGERS

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The common ASMR triggers are sounds of whisper, scratching, personal attention and roleplay.


“I experience this wonderful feeling of tickling in my head, when calm gentle words of care are adressed to me. It doesn’t have to be real: I can watch someone getting a massage and enjoy it just as much.”

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Oleg, 19

“As a teenager, I loved to go to the perfume department and listen how the seller was talking about the flavors. Relaxing voice caused pleasant sensation, so I started to search for it on YouTube and found about ASMR”

Ksenia, 21


“I see ASMR ferentiating noticing all details in th of seeing an Improvisati to concentr present mo ther past no


R as a difg feeling of l the tiny he process nd hearing. ion helps rate on the oment: neior future.� izumiasmir video maker, who doesn’t experience ASMR himself

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Close Whisperer


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Caring


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Friend


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Doctor


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Eye Exam


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Fant


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asy


2.THE WHISPER _ERS

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ASMR’tists


Maria GentleWhispering Maria is the reigning queen of the ASMR videos, with over 34,000 subscribers to her channel and 12 million views. I arranged a skype conversation with the Russian ASMR celebrity to ask about her vision on the role of the new Internet community.

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“ASMR community shapes a new generation of people�.


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In 2009, I was going through a depression and I had a lot of problems with anxiety. For around a year after that, I was just a viewer, watching the whisper videos every day for hours to fall asleep. I made my first video in February 2011 and it got only 2 views. I was angry and deleted it, but then I tried once again and made another trial. It was a video of turning magazine pages. Over a month I got 1000 followers on YouTube. To be honest, it was huge for that time.

“A lot of tee write to me that I am th model. Tha responsibil

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Mostly people like that in these videos there are no swear words, no noise, no aggression. Nothing stupid is happening. Nobody sells, nobody imposes anything here. ASMR-viewers are obsessed with details. I get hundreds of comment that something was not perfectly parallel or clean. My nails must be perfect and same lenglth, and if I got a pimple, it cannot appear on the screen. Details are everything. I personally don’l like “ASMR” term – I find it rude, too much pseudo-scientific.


I take making these silly videos very seriously, maybe even too seriously. Before fimling, I divide my story into segments, make research, write script, memorize it before filming. I’m still mostly in ASMR when I’m in the community, when I’m online. In real life nobody really knows who I am. I’m just a regular person, and that’s great.

enagers e, saying heir role at brings lity”

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My boyfriend helps me a lot. I think the most ASMR conversation or experiences I do is with him: we test each other out in real life. To be honest, I try to protect my privacy. I get like 50 mails per day, asking me to give a life advice. Often people confuse me with their friend. At some point I can’t answer anymore, and people just get offended. Russian roots contribute to my popularity . People say my videos are filled with Russian heartfulness. Accent plays a huge role too.


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I admit: the fact that I am a pretty girl plays a big role in my popularity. And the story of a Russian living in States adds to it as well. Once I quit my job and wanted to try to make ASMR a business, like other popular makers. I tried to make private talks on Skype for money and stuff like that. Soon I realized that as long as there is a deadline. all my sincerity fades away. I just couldn’t do it! Obligation was killing my love. ASMR is not business. It’s an expression.

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“ASMR video not everyth That not ev evil. Nobod body impos


os show that hing is lost. verything is dy sells, noses here�

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Behind TheMoons A young French ASMR’tist who doesn’t want to get famous explains why ASMR is not weird and why can it become a new form of art in future.

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“It’s about embracing and appreciating everything you may find in your life.”


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I was an ASMR viewer first and I though I couldn’t add much to the community until a friend who introduced me to it convinced me that I could do that too. That’s how my first video appeared online in August 2013. I make my videos original basing them on my personal interests, like photography or motivational talks. I always do something that I would like to watch myself. My favorites from my own videos are not so popular. For example, when I talk about photography and show my cameras I don’t get so many likes, even though it’s my favorite.

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“ASMR is abo things, simp things you s every day, b take care of ASMR can become more and more artistic. There are amazing ASMR makers, such as “ASMRequests”, that are giving another face to ASMR. What she makes is like a Sci-Fi series, but very relaxing! These videos make it easier to watch ASMR for those who find it creepy. I don’t want to get too famous so that people who know me can recognize me and think I am doing something weird or creepy. I experience it even with my close friends. ASMR often seems weird to people who don’t know it. If people could just understand. It’s not that weird in the the end!


The whole thing about the community is friendliness, support, positivity — basically, helping people to feel good. Making a video for me takes a lot of preparation, like writing script and dealing with equipment and post-production editing. In total it can take the whole day. As a busy student, I make videos once a month. The importance of the content of what I say depends on the video. For example, in the dentist roleplay what I say is less important then how I say it.

out simple ple sounds — see and hear but don’t f“ ASMRtists talk to each other, give each other feedback, but we don’t meet in reality. ASMR is still very American. In my country [France] I don’t really know many video makers, maybe 5 of them. One of them is my friend, and I’ve never met any other. If you want to make a video, don’t be afraid of YouTube trolls. Make something that you would like to see yourself. Don’t expect immediate success and make something you are excited about. Take your time!

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IDENTITY

“I drew the an abstract purpose. N can say tha images are Same for A only hear a an abstract but we do n exactly wh and why we


logo in t way on Nobody at these e letters. ASMR: we and see t image, not know hat is it e like it.� Roman, ASMR Radio

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3.RELAX _ING COM MUNITY


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HEALI NG &LONELINESS

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The healing aspect is known to reduce depression, anxiety, insomnia and feeling of loneliness.


“I started listening to ASMR videos every night, and yes, it changed my life. I began to feel better, sleep and stopped to look at the problem as a tragedy. In general, I was cured from depression and life has become a little easier.”

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Oleg,19

“I watch it every night before going to bed. Watching it is basically helps me relax and fall asleep faster.”

Ksenia, 21


Yes, that is about me. I have always lacked attention, even in relationship with girls. I craved for attention, care, support. But young girls are very proud, so I never got what I wanted and it lead to a break-up. ASMR helps to overcome loneliness, but it’s not enough.

Oleg, viewer

“I get AS when I f cared a

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There are some people that watch roleplays because they don’t have friends to talk to. I’m sure there are lonely people, but some people even don’t have any problems and just want to relax. It’s not a community of people having issues seeking for help in the internet from people they don’t know, its different. We are not just making videos pretending to help people. We give real advice that can help people in different situations.

Behind The Moons, video maker


I imagine that the effect may be especially profound for people who otherwise experience little intimacy in their lives.

Huron, psychologist

SMR feel about�

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There are 4 types of people in ASMR community. First ones watch videos purely for triggers to get tingles, that are very special and addictive. Second ones cure insomnia with it. The third category deals with anxiety and aggression, and I myself started listening to whisper at my work in the toilet, so that I wouldn’t kill my collegues. The last group are people who are searching for something — searching for friends or girlfriends, that are attracted to intimacy and distance at the same time. They believe they are talking to real people, that these people are their friends, as they lack attention in real life. And kindness of our community attracts them.


I think it has to do with childhood. Whenever your mother would treat you delicately, or your doctor or teacher would talk to you gently. The caring touch is the biggest trigger.

Maria GentleWhispering, video maker

“Kindn Attent Respec

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The reason I decided to create the first ASMR Radio was laziness. Searching on YouTube everytime get me very frustrated . This project has vast possibilities: organization of contests with prizes, voting for best ASMR. The winner gets the audience, also money. So the quality of ASMR videos grows, so does recognition.

Roman, ASMR Radio


I created the Facebook group in 2011, and had no idea that after 2,5 years it will have 14,000 members. They all found it by themselves, I do not make any promotion. My role is to give people like me a cozy place to relax and watch thousands of such videos, that help them fight depression, insomnia, panic attacks, etc.

ness. tion. ct.”

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We don’t do any scientific research in here, and it’s useless to ask me: “what is ASMR from scientific point of view?” What if I don’t want to know. In a way,. I get mails from people of any age — some are over 50 even. They are thankful and extremely happy that they found the community, where nobody would make fun of them.

Alexey, creator of Facebook ASMR Community


F U T U R E

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SUBCULT U R E THAT WANTS TO GO MAINSTREAM.


“I believe in future ASMR community will appear in mainstream media and news, recognized as something that can be used as holistic therapy for stress.� Darren The ScottishWhisper, video maker

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I think this softness and easiness should be integrated in all professions. If doctors would behave softer and kinder, it would give ASMR effect to majority of people. I see that it could be used a lot in spas, maybe in anxiety prevention or treatment. I see it used a lot like in insomnia treatment. I was thinking they could even put it in airplanes, when people travel and they have a fear of flight and they need something to help them fall asleep.

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You don’t have that option right now on the plane. You have all kinds of movies, entertainment, but you don’t have anything soothing, which is amazing.

“It will help of people t er someth themselve


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p millions to discovhing new in es” On the one hand I think that media will break us apart, and maybe will ruin it in a way, that intimacy, that little tiny community. But, on the bigger scale, I think it will help millions of people, maybe to discover something new in them. As you go through the whole journey of ASMR – I sound like a teacher, I’m not really preaching or anything – it’s just I’ve been in this for so long, and I’ve been in contact with so many people. You just start looking into it deeper, on a deeper level.

Maria GentleWhispering, video maker


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BIBLIOGRAPHY

1. Harry Cheadle (31 July 2012) “ASMR, THE GOOD FEELING NO ONE CAN EXPLAIN”. VICE 2. O’Connell, Mark (27 November 2012). “Surprisingly Interesting”. Slate 3. Moxley, Leanna (20 May 2013) “Something Quiet, Something Just for You”. The Hairpin. 4. “Autonomous sensory meridian response” In Wikipedia. Retrieved February 14, 2013, from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ASMR 5. “Maria GentleWhispering” YouTube channel, from https://www.youtube.com/user/ GentleWhispering 6. ”Behind TheMoons” YouTube channel, from https://www.youtube.com/user/BehindTheMoons 7. “Scottish Whisper” YouTube channel, from https://www.youtube.com/channel/ UCosSE6We3kVMrYud9DonlQA

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A BY ANASTASIA KUBRAK

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ASMR: The Most Relaxing Community