Autonomous sensory meridian response, otherwise known as ASMR, has become a popular component of live-streams and content creation over the last few years, experiencing an incredible boom during the pandemic.

ASMR streams have become a staple on platform such as YouTube and Twitch with many people consuming the streams for background noise (similar to white noise), to assist with concentration and/or relaxation, for therapeutic reasons, to help with going asleep, and many others.

ASMR content started really garnering attention back in 2018 for how it was growing on YouTube. Then, in 2022, there was a boom in popularity for what is called sensual ASMR, leading to some crackdowns by platforms on creators in the ASMR space.

As Vox shared in their report, Steven Novella, a clinical neurologist at Yale University School of Medicine, discussed a potential scientific basis for the ASMR experience back in a 2012 post on the NeuroLogica Blog online.

“Or, ASMR could just be a way of activating the pleasure response. Vertebrate brains are fundamentally hardwired for pleasure and pain — for positive and negative behavioral feedback. We are rewarded with a pleasurable sensation for doing things and experiencing things that increase our survival probability, and have a negative or painful experience to make us avoid harmful behavior or warn us about potential danger or injury. Over evolutionary time a complex set of reward and aversion feedbacks have developed.

Add to this the notion of neurodiversity — the fact that all of our human brains are not clones or copy cats, but vary in every possible way they can vary. We have a range of likes and dislikes, and there are individuals and even subcultures that seem to have a different pattern of pleasure stimulation than what is typical. (Perhaps in some cases this is largely cultural, not neurotypical.) S&M comes to mind. If reports are accurate, there are some people who experience pain as pleasurable and erotic.”

Whatever the case may be, ASMR is a big part of content creation, expanding to platforms such as TikTok as well, and a reason why Disko is aiming to be the premier ASMR streaming platform for fans and for creators around the world.

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