New study says that the best poker face is not having a poker face

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new study finds that a resolutely neutral facial expression may not be the best strategy when playing poker. “Surprisingly, we find that threatening face information has little influence on wagering behavior, but faces relaying positive emotional characteristics impact peoples’ decisions,” write Erik J. Schlicht, Shinsuke Shimojo, Colin F. Camerer, Peter Battaglia, andKen Nakayama. Opponents of “emotionally positive” players mistakenly folded more often. The authors conclude that “the best ‘poker face’ for bluffing may not be a neutral face, but rather a face that contains emotional correlates of trustworthiness.”

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including SaintPetersBlog.com, FloridaPolitics.com, ContextFlorida.com, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.