Body language can play an important role in investigations, as it can provide valuable clues and insights into a person’s thoughts, emotions, and intentions. Private investigators can use body language in several ways to gather information and conduct investigations.
Body Language Examples
- Detecting deception: Private investigators may use body language to detect signs of deception or dishonesty. For example, avoiding eye contact, fidgeting, or nervousness may indicate that a person is lying or withholding information.
- Assessing emotions: Private investigators may use body language to assess a person’s emotional state. For example, facial expressions, tone of voice, and posture can provide clues about a person’s mood and level of comfort in a particular situation.
- Observing behavior: Private investigators may use body language to observe a person’s behavior and activities. For example, observing a person’s movements and gestures can provide insights into their routines, habits, and activities.
- Building rapport: Private investigators may use body language to build rapport and establish trust with a person. For example, using appropriate eye contact, posture, and gestures can help a private investigator establish a connection and create a comfortable environment for an interview.
- Gathering evidence: Private investigators may use body language to gather evidence for a case. For example, observing a person’s behavior and movements in public places can provide evidence of infidelity, fraud, or other illegal activities.
So we wondered. Can the same rules be applied when reviewing a subject’s Digital Media? Can a Facebook or Instagram video be enough to use some of the same techniques as in person examples to provide clues into behavior?
The Trump Deposition
Have you heard of The Behavior Panel? Scott Rouse, Mark Bowden, Chase Hughes, and Greg Hartley are the world’s top body language and behavior experts. Together as The Behavior Panel they analyze body language and human behavior in videos of public interest. They are a non-partisan team, looking to educate and entertain you with their interest and expertise in communication, body language, deception detection, interrogation, and resistance to interrogation. You can find them on YouTube.
They recently analyzed the online video of Donald Trump’s recorded Deposition. This is a great example just how much can be taken from an online video of a person answering questions. If you get a chance, take a look at the video on the Behavior Panels’ podcast. They point out several items of interest. The shrugging of shoulders that Trump does from time to time may convey a sense of being sorry for something is just one example they explore.
Not only can some of these techniques be used in digital media, it can be used in Social Media as well.
Social Media Body Language
Technically, body language refers to the nonverbal signals that we convey through our physical movements and gestures, which are typically seen in person. However, in social media videos, you can still convey nonverbal cues through your facial expressions, tone of voice, and posture.
For example, facial expressions can show enthusiasm or sadness, change the tone of your voice will convey different emotions, and gestures may be used to emphasize certain points. Voice inflections can be a sign of stress or anxiety.
Studying a social media post’s background can be very telling as well. For example, a cluttered or messy background may communicate disorganization or lack of attention to detail, while a professional or clean background may communicate professionalism and attention to detail.
Social media posts can provide valuable clues in an investigation, as they can reveal a person’s thoughts, emotions, activities, and connections with others.
Clues in a Social Media Post
- Location: Social media posts may contain information about a person’s location, such as check-ins or geotags, which can be used to verify alibis or track movements.
- Relationships: Social media posts may reveal a person’s relationships with others, such as friends, family, or acquaintances, which can be used to identify potential suspects or witnesses.
- Activities: Social media posts may provide information about a person’s activities, such as hobbies, interests, or daily routines, which can be used to establish patterns of behavior or gather evidence of illegal activities.
- Emotions: Social media posts may reveal a person’s emotions, such as anger, sadness, or happiness, which can be used to assess their mental state and motivations.
- Communications: Social media posts may contain messages, comments, or other communications with others, which can be used to identify potential witnesses or suspects, and to gather evidence of criminal activities.
Overall, social media posts can provide valuable clues and insights into a person’s thoughts, emotions, activities, and connections with others, which can be used to support an investigation. However, it’s important to note that social media posts should be used in conjunction with other investigative techniques and evidence-gathering methods, and that proper legal and ethical guidelines should be followed when accessing and using social media data.