Retention of autobiographical memories: An Internet-based diary study
In this online study we examined the retention of recent personal events using an Internet-based diary technique. Each participant (N=878) recorded on a website one recent personal event and was contacted after a retention interval that ranged between 2 and 46 days. We investigated how well the participants could recall the content, time, and details of their recorded event. We found a classic retention function. Details of the events were forgotten more rapidly than the content and the time of the events. There were no differences between the forgetting rates of the ?who?, ?what? and ?where? elements of the content component. Reminiscing, social sharing, pleasantness, and frequency of occurrence aided recall, but surprisingly importance and emotionality did not. They were, however, strongly associated with reminiscing and social sharing.