While you may think it’s just mindless entertainment and things to pass the time, it turns out watching the Kardashians can make you a horrible person.
According to a new study for the London School of Economics, watching the popular reality show can actually make you a worse person. The research focused on “materialistic media,” that usually “glamorizes fame, luxury, and wealth.”
According to The Telegraph, the study used two control groups, totaling 487 individuals. The people in the study were shown specific media–one group seeing shows like Keeping Up with the Kardashians and other materialistic media programs, while the other group was shown shows more “news like,” consisting of neutral images an natural scenery.
“Results showed that even a small amount of exposure to materialistic media had a negative impact on both anti-welfare attitudes and support for anti-welfare policies.”
Participants were also polled about their viewership of “materialistic” television programs such as Keeping Up With the Kardashians, and researchers again found regular viewers exhibited “stronger materialistic and anti-welfare attitudes than lighter consumers of these shows.”
“Humans are inherently materialistic but also very social and communal,” explained study author Dr. Rodolfo Leyva of LSE’s Department of Media and Communications department.
“The way this is expressed depends on our culture. If there is more emphasis on materialism as a way to be happy, this makes us more inclined to be selfish and anti-social, and therefore unsympathetic to people less fortunate.”