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Monkey Business – Science Nation

Monkey Business – Science Nation


FEMALE: See this? Here you go. MILES O’BRIEN: Logan knows when hes been
handed a raw deal. He and Liam, the monkey next to him,
just did the exact same trick. And Liam got a grape. Now, any monkey knows grapes are more prized than that boring old cucumber slice he received. SARAH BROSNAN: So, theyre more than happy
to eat cucumbers until they see their partner getting a grape; in which case, they
don’t like their cucumbers anymore. MILES O’BRIEN: We, humans, may not get all
spun up over cucumbers or grapes as our monkey cousins.
But we do share an innate sense of fair play. SARAH BROSNAN: Logan. MILES O’BRIEN: And with support from the
National Science Foundation, Psychologist Sarah Brosnan, and her team at
Georgia State University and Chapman University, are tying to see if cooperation is baked into our
DNA as well. MALE: We need everyone to click on the
green start button. MILES O’BRIEN: To test the notion, Brosnan has
rigged up games for humans and monkeys to play. SARAH BROSNAN: Are you ready guys? Were taking this game called the Assurance Game
where individuals do best if they cooperate. MILES O’BRIEN: To level the playing field, no
instructions are given on how to play the games. Players are paired with a team member.
Sometimes they see them, sometimes they dont. If each member of the team chooses the red square,
both win big. Monkeys win tasty treats, students get cash. FEMALE: You get a dollar apiece for red and red. MALE: The more we work together,
the more money we got. MILES O’BRIEN: If they cant get on the same page,
they get little or nothing. Monkeys and humans cooperated about
70% to 80% of the time. That suggests that cooperation behavior
runs deep in the nature of primates. The only time humans outscored monkeys was when
they employed our key advantage. SARAH BROSNAN: All of the people who talked
about the game figured out the cooperative interaction. MILES O’BRIEN: Our language skill sets us apart
from our primate cousins. SARAH BROSNAN: Which is probably whats allowed
us as humans to develop really complex cooperative enterprises like economies and nation states
that other species simply havent been able to do. MILES O’BRIEN: Thats enough to make Logan
and Liam envious. Or maybe its just sour grapes. For Science Nation, Im Miles OBrien.

Comments (7)

  1. Myles O'Brien? THE Myles O'Brien from DS9?

  2. You should have used children instead of adults. Children are more instinctive and less shaped by society, so they better represent human nature…

  3. In order to cure, you must understand. Infected with what? Rage.

  4. CNN and MSNBC go against human nature, innate in our DNA

  5. should only feed that one cucumber, see if hunger effects it…. also dont see how the fact that both humans and monkeys are prize driven indicates co operation runs deep in their dna.. they knew they would get a reward for picking the same color.. its not cooperation tho, just the desire for a treat

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