What Makes Cat Videos So Clickable?

Oct 6, 2014

Credit www.tastefullyoffensive.com

Internet memes are a dime a dozen, but users young and old have undoubtedly seen, and quite possibly enjoyed, a good cat video or two.

Even if we have better things to do, it seems almost inhuman to resist clicking the "play" button above a cute kitten's face.

But why are those prolific time-wasters so irresistible? On this week’s edition of "Two Guys on Your Head," Dr. Art Markman, Dr. Bob Duke and host Rebecca McInroy discuss the animal magnetism of cat videos.

Underlying the video phenomenon is our evolutionary instinct to fall in love with babies.  While raising a child is a challenge, our ingenious genetic evolution has instilled in us an insatiable attraction to the cuteness of small, helpless baby creatures, of all species, not just humans. 

Hence, within the modern era of easy access to technology that allows us to record, publish and distribute whatever our little hearts desire, we often want to share cute videos of kittens.  Or deer, or koalas, or sloths, or puppies. Basically, anything that’s unusual and provokes an intense emotional response is compelling to watch and share.