Q#174: What the hell is an ASMR video & how many uses do they have?

Without really knowing it, I’ve stumbled into the realm of ASMR vids on YouTube. I mean, I’ve heard the abbreviation a few times, seen the label, but have no real understanding of what it actually means. I’ve kept them on in the background while trying to read other stuff (while online, I use the Music Choice channels on my cable box when I’m not working on the computer) because commercials and music with words distracts me big time and confuses me.

I’m trying to get things cleaned up and get back into the writing groove as best I can. I’ve had some ideas, but after some crummy weather and a lot of re-organizing, I haven’t set up my writing space yet (baby steps, will get there in a few days). As much as I would like to go back to doing what I used to do years ago and hang out in a coffee shop half the day doing my writing and research work… yeah, not gonna work with my penny pinching.

So, I figured maybe I’d try some vids that have some café noises and light music while I work.

Hell, this is one I had on earlier today:

And that’s when I noticed “ASMR” at the end of the video.

But there are so many videos with ASMR tacked on at the end, and they seem a lot like just basic jazz music channels with some rain sounds or something (lost count how many of THOSE I bumped into online, and I couldn’t listen to them because they were gonna make me sleepy).

But there were some articles, like this one with Psychology Today, that I found which talk about some odd choices for ASMR vids that I hadn’t thought of, like whispering, light tapping, hair brushing, etc. I suppose they are for a specific purpose, like making one sleepy with something similar to white noise. Honestly, it feels like the ones with music in them are a whole different animal.

When I came across the term “head orgasms” in an article from The Guardian, I figured I was WAY out of my depth and had no clue what was up.

It just makes me wonder what the real point of these vids happens to be, and does every video that includes some form of ambient noise (coffee machines, sea waves, dish clatter, etc.) really count as ASMR? I’m just genuinely confused, but when it comes to things people watch on the internet (like TikTok challenges, mukbangs, and other random stuff that can create mass Darwin Award winners), I’m generally lost anyway.

As far as I know, I haven’t felt that weird tingling feeling, but maybe I haven’t been doing it right or watching the right vids. Makes me wonder what the point is of that feeling or sensation that’s supposed to happen and why I should care. But what’s weird is how long people have been asking the same question or putting vids out (years, from what a basic YouTube search shows), but I’ve only seen the label attached to some vids recently (of course, we’re talking the music-heavy ones, which I wonder about).

Yeah, this is confusing as heck to me and I wonder where the hell it came from and what it really is. And have you used some of these vids and found they work for you?

Fielder’s choice. Floor’s yours…

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