Final Project: Research Paper Draft

ASMR or Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response is a “tingling” feeling usually felt in the back of the head that is brought on by different audio and visual triggers. Common triggers include, soft hand motions, tapping, and whispering.

According to ASMR University, ASMR was first introduced to the internet community in 2007 through a thread on SteadyHealth. Many, however, credit artist Bob Ross to be the origin of ASMR through his relaxing step-by-step painting videos, which aired on PBS. The first YouTube channel devoted to the sensation was not started until 2009. This channel, WhisperingLife, featured a woman whispering into the camera without showing her face. Typically, her videos were in the style of vlog with her sharing about her life or a storytelling video, reading from a favorite book.

In 2010 and 2011, the ASMR community’s digital presence continued to grow through the first official Facebook group and Reddit thread. ASMR as a therapeutic or creative medium grew primarily through digital communities like Facebook, Reddit, and YouTube. The trend has evolved as years progress and is becoming increasingly mainstream. In 2013, NPR aired a segment discussing ASMR. Publications like The Washington Post, The New York Timesand others would follow, all exploring the new and confusing phenomenon. These stories acted as a way to skyrocket ASMR into popular culture discourse, transforming the trend from a niche community into a commonly discussed topic. ASMR artists subscriber counts continued to grow. Currently, the most popular channels have subscribers totaling over one million.

**What I have written so far is the intro to my paper in the rest of my research paper I will discuss the following topics:

  • Scientific belief behind what ASMR is; what is the tingling feeling
  • Specific ASMR artists (ex. GentleWhispering)
  • What scientific studies say about ASMR; personality traits, how people use it, etc.
  • What reactions ASMR typically garners
  • How ASMR has entered the physical space (ex. WhisperLodge)
  • What are the possible therapeutic uses of ASMR