Do you think people are more persuaded by real humans or virtual humans?
Do you think people are more persuaded by real humans or virtual non-human characters?
Do you think females are more persuaded by females or males?
Do you think males are more persuaded by females or males?
In their experiment, they had 138 students (41 males, 97 females) watch videos of six different speakers presenting the same persuasive argument. The six speakers are shown here.
The study concluded that both virtual humans and virtual non-humans were about as persuasive as real humans. I'm quite skeptical of this conclusion because the virtual animal characters were shown two or three times as large as the humans (just a head filling the entire screen as opposed to showing a whole person). And even so, their numbers do show some difference.
Females were slightly more persuaded by males than by females, and males were much more persuaded by females than by males. I'm more inclined to believe this result because it was more consistent and a larger effect:
Do you think the results from a study this size are valid in general? Do your personal experiences agree with their results (particularly the gender factor)?
After the talk, a member of the audience came up during the question session to point out "Your females had cleavage!"