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Once upon a time I read an article (or perhaps study/paper - I don't know) regarding different brain activity when referring to / thinking about different people:

  • You
  • Your close people, like family
  • Your not-so-close people, like friends or the keeper of the shop you usually go to
  • People you don't know like, say, politicians and celebrities

There is a chance that I read just crap from the internet (again) [Edit: I struggled trying to find the article on google but couldn't], but I'd like to know if there is any reliable source for that claim (a peer-reviewed-and-not-yet-dismissed paper, say).

Is there any reliable source (peer-reviewed & non-dismissed research paper - you all understand this matter better than me) regarding that topic?

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  • $\begingroup$ Can you clarify what exactly you are asking? Are you wondering if differences in brain activity are seen when you think/reference yourself versus family, family versus acquaintances, and so on? If there is some 'crap from the internet' you've read relating to this, is it something you could still cite here? Would be helpful in figuring out if there is a more specific claim being made. $\endgroup$ – Bryan Krause Sep 5 '18 at 21:03
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    $\begingroup$ "Are you wondering if differences in brain activity are seen when you think/reference yourself versus family, family versus acquaintances, and so on" << You nailed it :D. No: I don't remember the article. Sorry. It was 7 years ago. $\endgroup$ – Luis Masuelli Sep 5 '18 at 21:20
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This domain is extensively explored as a "self-referential processing" The largest difference between self vs. non-self is higher activation for self-relatad activation of medial posterior and frontal regions (e.g., https://davidcjohnson.files.wordpress.com/2011/04/self-ref-vs-valence.png?w=694&zoom=2) Those two regions are part of the Default Mode Network.

One of the most prominent researchers is Georg Northoff:

https://scholar.google.ca/citations?user=-w-9zOQAAAAJ&hl=en You can check his reviews and found references to many additional studies.

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