Social responses to lifelike characters can significantly alter human evaluations of technology. This study tested the differences between a picture of an on-screen character interacting in three different contexts (retail purchase, health advice, reading survey) versus a three-dimensional robot conducting the same interactions off screen. A laboratory experiment (n=72) was conducted in the US and replicated in Japan which tested differences in social evaluations, credibility, and memory. Results showed significant interactions between nationality and embodiment across a range of social and cognitive responses including perceived credibility, perceived surveillance, memory, and valence. These results are interpreted within technological and cultural contexts.
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