In Brief

A study of modern day hunter-gatherers illuminates what is so valuable and 'uniquely human' about Internet communication.

Evolutionary biologists at Arizona State University have attempted to understand two of the uniquely human traits of our species: that we cooperate with people we’re not related to and we learn from each other. By studying 32 present day foraging (i.e. hunter – gatherer) peoples, the research uncovered that:

hunter-gatherers are always blending and moving in smaller and larger groups, with lots of interaction between them. The interaction facilitates learning and the exchange of new ideas. You don’t evolve the cognitive propensity to learning if you aren’t exposed to ideas that are worth copying,”

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