Contact Is in the Eye of the Beholder: The Eye Contact Illusion
In a simple experiment, we demonstrate that you don’t need to mindfully look at the eyes of your audience to be perceived as making eye contact during face-to-face conversation. Simply gazing somewhere around the face/head area will suffice. Or to borrow a term from Mareschal and colleagues, direct gaze will suffice. For those readers who experience anxiety when gazing specifically at another person’s eyes, or when being gazed at, we expect this is welcome news.
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