BY Michelle Garcia
December 10 2009 6:20 AM ET
A new study by Tufts University shows that people can identify others'
sexual orientation after looking at them for just seconds.
According to ScienceBlogs.com, researchers Nalini Ambady and Nick Rule used college students in a test to accurately identify gay men based on 90 photos from dating websites. None of the men in the photos — half of whom were seeking male partners, the other half seeking females — had facial hair, jewelry, glasses, or other accessories.
Each photo was shown to 90 student volunteers for either 33 milliseconds, 50 milliseconds, 100 milliseconds, 6.5 seconds, or 10 seconds. With each snapshot, the students were able to identify a subject's sexual orientation with at least 50% accuracy, depending on the amount of time given. The most accurate time sequence was 50 milliseconds, with 62% projecting correctly. However, when students took their own amount of time to weigh the photos, the accuracy rate rose to 70%.
In an adjacent study, the researchers pulled photos from Facebook profiles of 133 men that were posted from friends or family, therefore being of a more neutral nature. In that trial, the accuracy rate was 54%, at 50 millisecond intervals.
The study's authors said the reason people may have keen gaydar is so heterosexual women can find a suitable mate and so that men can easily identify their competition.
- Hot Sheet: Super Duper Star Zack
- Florist Counter-Sues Washington, Arguing She Has a Right to Discriminate
- Herndon Graddick Resigns as President of GLAAD
- WATCH: Marriage Equality a Big Story? Not on Fox News
- The Story of How Jason Collins Came Out to His Twin Brother
- Protests Continue But Opponents in France Get Final Loss
Sign Up For Email Updates
- Television These 20 Sexy Pics of Stephen Amell Will Hit Your Bullseye May 17 2013 9:00 PM
- Politics Portugal Approves Adoption Rights for Same-Sex Spouses May 17 2013 8:32 PM
- Pride S.F. Gay Couple Throw Fund-raiser for Trans Woman's Breast Implants May 17 2013 7:18 PM
- Marriage Equality WATCH: Marriage Equality a Big Story? Not on Fox News May 17 2013 7:18 PM
- Women Jonathan Groff/Troian Bellisario Starrer C.O.G. to Open Outfest May 17 2013 7:04 PM
- Style WATCH: Nasty Pig Meets Naughty Dog May 17 2013 7:00 PM
- Sports UFC Comes Down Hard on Homophobic Wrestler May 17 2013 6:49 PM