General Question

buckyboy28's avatar

Is there a name for this strange phenomenon?

Asked by buckyboy28 (4938 points ) June 26th, 2011

Is there a name for the phenomenon that occurs when you learn something new, or hear something for the first time, and then all the sudden start to see it everywhere?

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9 Answers

athenasgriffin's avatar

Perceptual Vigilance. It is a psychological term.

athenasgriffin's avatar

Or the Baader-Meinhof Phenomenon.

buckyboy28's avatar

@athenasgriffin Probably more so that one, but perceptual vigilance seems to work in some cases. I’m finding interesting articles on both!

I’d be willing to bet I’ll hear the phrase “Baader-Meinhof” uttered tomorrow.

lillycoyote's avatar

This is something I’ve mostly noticed whenever I get a new (new to me) car, if this is the phenomenon you are talking about, buckyboy28. I get a Nissan Sentra or a Nissan king cab pick up (I was a Nissan girl for a long time), suddenly I am noticing Nissan Sentra sedans and king cab pick ups everywhere. I get a Subaru Wagon and suddenly there are Subaru Wagons everywhere. :-)

Response moderated (Unhelpful)
flutherother's avatar

IT could also be called synchronicity.

lillycoyote's avatar

@flutherother I’m voting for the reticular activating system. Synchronicity is kind of one of those “jello concepts.” Not saying there’s no such thing, just saying it’s more than a little squishy and hard to pin down. :-)

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