Rating stranger's attractiveness to their face

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2018/05/17/rating-strangers-attractiven.html

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Every time I see these videos, it seems they have chosen the “participants” very very purposefully.

How in the hell did the dude in the bowl cut ever make the list without them assuming he was a candidate for a 1.

It feels rather contrived in this regard.

I also will add…attractiveness is definitely about more than physical appearance. You have to get to know someone.



All I know is that the late 80s/early 90s multicolor shirt tent needs to go back to where it came from.


I mean, welcome to being a woman in public.


I had a coo coo uncle that did this to everyone he met, what an asshole.




Different people have different standards for attractiveness. They picked people who would elicit varied and maybe surprising reactions. For example, turns out your evaluation of bowl cut dude is actually pretty personal.

That was my point. did it go right past you?

I thought this was awesome! I’d love to do it. You know, either side of the fence.

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Which is strange for a baby. Most of them are quite vocal on their judgements.


It’s a running joke between me and my wife that infants are fascinated/terrified of me. We will be in a store and she will notice a kid in a cart staring intently at me, and bring them to my attention. I then look directly at them, and about 2/3 of the time the child’s face will screw up and they’ll start crying. It’s pretty weird.


This is pretty fucked up, if for no other reason than this being a point in time when 45 is normalizing blatant sexism. But as @manybellsdown points out, it presents women’s daily experience in a stark way.

I think it would have worked better if they had the two people meet, shake hands and then sit down across from each other while the rater wrote down a number for the person they’re rating on a card before showing it to to them and the camera. (But at that point they’d just be ripping off Jimmy Kimmel Live.) Reason being that sitting across from someone is less intimidating and more likely to produce the same rating as someone shallow enough to do this quietly in their head, which I think is what they were going for displaying. [They could have them rate each other, but the problem you’d run into there is that a lot of people would actually rate the other person as close as possible to what they think they themselves will be rated in an unconscious effort to minimize mutual embarrassment.]


Black Mirror is going to have hurry up or get left behind by our actual dystopia…

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Although I’m taken and no longer in the “game”, if I find a woman to be intellectually stimulating, have a sense of humor (goofy/ironic), be an animal lover, and kind… then the attraction begins. Example: There are guys here at work who actually find Sarah Palin to be attractive. Blleeh!!


I don’t see it like that, somehow. I feel like it would be good if we could be really honest to strangers about what we think is attractive or not. I think it’s worse /not/ knowing what other people genuinely think.

I thought the point of the exercise was to show how excruciatingly difficult it is to tell your opinion of other people, and how “you mileage may vary”. Like for example that short Asian guy? I thought he was really cute and I’d have put him in the top 3 for sure. Wouldn’t you be happy to know some stranger on the street thinks you’re really hot?

… Wait, no. Don’t answer that. :3


Fair enough. To me the video itself isn’t the fucked up thing. The fucked up thing is reducing someone’s attractiveness to a number. It’s one-dimensional and so reductive.

Of course. Yes. But I’d be seriously disappointed in their way of seeing me if I learned that for them it came down to a single number. It would be as useless as being rated by the algorithm I linked to above. Attractiveness is a multifaceted gestaltic interaction between two or more people. It isn’t a number on a line. To see it as such strikes me as a paucity in how one is attracted to another human being.

To be clear, I’m not saying the people in the video are incapable of seeing more than a number; they’re being asked to reduce it to that for clickbait. But people who actually think that way in real life without being told to, as I said, is shallow.

Edited because, while you guessed right about me, you had no way of knowing that, and I shouldn’t have implied it was an okay assumption to make.


And no one ever punched/slapped/spat on him?

Because assault may be wrong, and even illegal… but if you go around needlessly provoking people with your unsolicited opinions in person, it’s bound to happen sooner or later…


If someone isn’t paying my bills, signing my paycheck or actively bringing joy into my life, then I don’t give a happy fuck what their opinions of me are, especially those about my appearance.

I live my life for me, not for other people, so I personally couldn’t care less.