Essentia Blog

Santa’s choice: The 7 best behavioral videos on YouTube

For your Christmas viewing pleasure, we (on Santa’s behalf, obviously) present seven of the best behavioral science videos on the web today. Each is only a few minutes long and is an entertaining classic in behavioral wisdom. Enjoy!




The study of social conformity reached new levels in the 1950’s when social psychology pioneer, Solomon Asch, carried out a number of famous experiments. This is the famous elevator test, as proved in a 1962 episode of Candid Camera.



Think you’re the author of your own ideas and decisions? British illusionist, Derren Brown, shows the power of Priming and the unconscious influences that can so easily sway us.




From popcorn to buying your next car, The Decoy Effect is a phenomenon that good sales people everywhere exploit to help you spend money.




The Asch Conformity Experiment was originally conducted in the 1950s. The hairstyles here imply that it remained ground-breaking in the 1970s.




Inspired by Nassim Taleb’s The Black Swan, this video explores how we can be far from scientific when testing out our ideas or beliefs.




A very funny experiment about cognitive habits and what happens when we try and get our neural algorithms to approach things differently.




Psychologists Simons & Chabris famously asked 1,500 American adults asked about their intuitions. Over 75% of respondents firmly believed that they would notice something unexpected when it enters their field of view, even when they are paying attention to something else. Along with the Invisible Gorilla, this test is one of many that proved them wrong. Will you notice it?