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Study says Pokémon GO players are happier and friendlier

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There is no denying that Pokémon GO, developed by Niantic Labs, has been a massive success. Further, there are some obvious health benefits because you need to walk around in a quest to catch’em all. Recently, Niantic revealed that the game still has 65 million monthly active users, which is an impressive number, to say the least.

Now, a study suggests that those who play Pokémon GO are “more likely to be positive, friendly and physically active”. The latter is of course quite obvious, but it is excellent news that the game is actually having a positive psychological effect on those playing it.

The study comes from a group of media researchers at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and was published in the journal of Media Psychology. The study consisted of a survey of 399 U.S. citizens between the ages of 18 and 75 and looks at Pokémon GO as “a Catalyst for Positive Life Experiences”.

James Alex Bonus, a graduate student in educational media who worked on the research explains some of the findings in more detail:  

“People told us about a variety of experiences with differential relationships to well-being. But, for the most part, the Pokemon Go players said more about positive things that were making them feel their life was more worthwhile, more satisfactory, and making them more resilient.” - Source

Not only does playing Pokémon GO make players happier and all around more positive, but the game also has an effect on their ability to grow old friendships or make new ones, as Mr. Bonus explains:

“The more people were playing, the more they were engaging in behaviors that reflected making new connections - making Facebook friends, introducing themselves to someone new, exchanging phone numbers with someone, or spending more time with old friends and learning new things about them.” - Source

Those effects are probably not seen players who saw a golden Magikarp turn into a Ditto! My attempt at a joke aside, it is excellent to hear that Pokémon GO has a positive effect on people’s lives.

What do you think about the study and its findings and have you felt happier or friendlier since you’ve started playing Pokémon GO? Let us know in the comment section below.

Sources: WISC, Study journal

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