Chat Room Psychology
The Netiquette of Bingo Chat
Half the fun of playing online bingo is chilling out in the chat rooms with your fellow bingo fans. However, behaviour in chat rooms doesn’t necessarily mimic behaviour in real life. Online anonymity can often give users more confidence to express themselves, or vice versa, put pressure on the user to conform to social norms and opinions they wouldn’t normally have. So what is the etiquette, or “netiquette”, of bingo chat rooms?
In general, individuals are thought to act more extreme on the internet, whether becoming more likely to joke, more talkative or more aggressive . In extreme cases, this can lead to ‘trolling’ – spamming social media pages with crass jokes and antagonistic comments for your own enjoyment. Several factors contribute to an aggressive attitude online, including anonymity and asynchronicity (“my actions do not occur in real-time”). Thankfully, bingo chat rooms are mostly safe from such attacks, as chat hosts will monitor the feed, banning anyone who posts inappropriately.
Then again, some evidence contradicts this. A study, published on the scientific website ‘Nature’, shows that online behaviour does not vary much from real life. Researchers analysed 2.5 million posts covering various topics, and found that user activity was consistent with known power-law and emotional responses. This is certainly true for bingo chat rooms, where the atmosphere is relaxed and friendly.
Note that the atmosphere of a bingo room may also change depending on the number of players. More players talking as a group gives individuals opportunity and initiative to jump into the conversation. This is also a brilliant opportunity to meet new people and make friends. Statistics show the average user will return to the online chats regularly to meet other users they may already know.
Nevertheless, bingo is a challenge with big chunks of money at stake, which may sometimes give chats a competitive edge. This is especially true if someone has a winning streak – others might ostracise them from discussions or accuse them of foul play as a result.
It may be difficult sometimes to judge the attitude of people in a chat, as you can’t use tone of voice or facial expressions to help guide you. In fact, a recent study at the Univeristy of Haifa revealed that individuals who had to maintain eye contact were 50% less likely to be hostile, compared to those who had their eyes hidden. The lead author of the study, Noam Lapidot-Lefler, believes this is because eye contact “helps you understand the other person’s feelings, the signals that the person is trying to send you. Therefore, chats may become difficult to interpret as you don’t see the other party face to face.
There is further psychology behind slang used online, especially the phrases unique to bingo players like 1TG and WDWs. Using a set of particular phrases makes your group or ‘club’ of people feel exclusive and selective. There is also the feeling of being part of an ‘in’ crowd so participants feel special as a result. Moreover, understanding the words behind any acronym is a bit like solving a puzzle, making you feel more knowledgeable/superior.
Chat hosts can both hurt and help the atmosphere of a bingo room. The difficulty is finding a the fine line between encouraging and irritating. Not to mention, chat hosts sometimes like to advertise promotions or other bingo sites in chat, which can get annoying for people trying to talk socially around the advertisements. Mostly, chat hosts are treated as friends in the chat, some even posting bios for the players to better get to know them.
For example, read what CM Chloe had to say: I’m 42 yr old mum of 3 i love UB40 & Deff Leoppard. I love to have a laugh and play bingo. I have a wicked sense of humour, hence why I love being a Chat Host. My lucky number is number 69 lol xx
That about sums up our exploration into bingo chat netiquette! If you have any questions we didn’t cover, or are just plain curious for more information, don’t hesitate to get in touch. Also, when in doubt posting in a bingo chat, be sure to check that particular site’s chat guidelines page – they are sure to have one!