Hadzas Shed Light on Ancient Social Networks

Hadzas Shed Light on Ancient Social Networks

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Long before Facebook made it possible to share photos of your breakfast with hundreds of friends and let them know just how you feel about your latest parking ticket, humans were forming social networks with essentially the same structure people use today.

A team of researchers has mapped out the relationships among a remote group of 205 hunter-gatherers in Tanzania who live as humans did about 10,000 years ago and found that their social networks are very much like ours, even in the absence of the complicating factors of megacities, cellphones and the Internet. The researchers found that individuals who are willing to cooperate prefer the company of other cooperative people and that free riders tend to stick to their own kind as well.

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