Sound Level of Environmental Music and Drinking Behavior: A Field Experiment With Beer Drinkers

Authors

  • Nicolas Guéguen,

    1. From the Laboratoire Gestic, UFR LSHS, Université de Bretagne-Sud (NG, CJ, HLG, TM), Lorient Cedex, France; and the Laboratoire PsyNCA, Université de Rouen (ML), Mont-Saint-Aignan Cedex, France.
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  • Céline Jacob,

    1. From the Laboratoire Gestic, UFR LSHS, Université de Bretagne-Sud (NG, CJ, HLG, TM), Lorient Cedex, France; and the Laboratoire PsyNCA, Université de Rouen (ML), Mont-Saint-Aignan Cedex, France.
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  • Hélène Le Guellec,

    1. From the Laboratoire Gestic, UFR LSHS, Université de Bretagne-Sud (NG, CJ, HLG, TM), Lorient Cedex, France; and the Laboratoire PsyNCA, Université de Rouen (ML), Mont-Saint-Aignan Cedex, France.
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  • Thierry Morineau,

    1. From the Laboratoire Gestic, UFR LSHS, Université de Bretagne-Sud (NG, CJ, HLG, TM), Lorient Cedex, France; and the Laboratoire PsyNCA, Université de Rouen (ML), Mont-Saint-Aignan Cedex, France.
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  • Marcel Lourel

    1. From the Laboratoire Gestic, UFR LSHS, Université de Bretagne-Sud (NG, CJ, HLG, TM), Lorient Cedex, France; and the Laboratoire PsyNCA, Université de Rouen (ML), Mont-Saint-Aignan Cedex, France.
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Reprint requests: Nicolas Guéguen, Laboratoire Gestic, UFR LSHS, Université de Bretagne-Sud, 4 rue Jean Zay, BP 92116, 56321 Lorient Cedex, France; Fax: 33 2 97 67 65 37; E-mail: nicolas.gueguen@univ-ubs.fr

Abstract

Objective:  It had been found that environmental music was associated with an increase in alcohol consumption. The presence versus absence of music, high versus slow tempo and the different styles of environmental music is associated with different level of alcohol consumption. However, the effect of the level of the environmental music played in a bar still remained in question.

Methods:  Forty male beer drinkers were observed in a bar. According to a random distribution, patrons were exposed to the usual level of environmental music played in 2 bars where the experiment was carried out or were exposed to a high level.

Results:  The results show that high level volume led to increase alcohol consumption and reduced the average amount of time spent by the patrons to drink their glass.

Conclusions:  The impact of environmental music on consumption was discussed and the “arousal” hypothesis and the negative effect of loud music on social interaction were used to explain our results.

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