Wednesday, September 13, 2017

"Groups lie more than individuals"

Via Reddit: "...even individuals who have a proven track record of honest behavior are no match for the potentially negative influences present in a group dynamic, especially when money is at stake, according to a new study."

The study authors, Martin G. Kocher, Simeon Schudy and Lisa Spantig, all of the Ludwig-Maximilians-University of Munich, studied 273 participants in both individual and group situations. Participants, who were paid for their role in the study, were shown video of dice rolls and asked to report the number shown on the die. The higher the reported die roll, the larger the monetary compensation. Participants were evaluated on an individual basis, and in two group settings: one in which all members of the group must report the same die roll to receive a payoff, and another in which members do not have to report the same die roll to receive a payoff. In the group settings, members are able to communicate with each other via a chat feature.

“We observed that groups lie significantly more than individuals when group members face mutual financial gain and have to coordinate an action in order to realize that financial gain,” said Kocher.

Of the 78 groups that participated in the study, arguments for dishonesty were explicitly mentioned in 51 percent of the group chats. In fact, of the messages that were exchanged among group members, 43.4 percent argued for dishonest reporting, while only 15.6 percent consisted of arguments for honesty. Interestingly, the authors found that the number of individuals in each group who had exhibited dishonest behavior in the individual portion of the study had no real impact on these results, as dishonesty occurred even in groups where all members had previously responded honestly.

“The ability for group members to exchange and discuss potential justifications for their dishonest behavior can create an overall shift in the group’s beliefs of what constitutes moral behavior,” said Spantig. “This allows them to establish a new norm regarding what does or does not constitute dishonest behavior,” according to Schudy.

(Link to more)


Chip Ahoy said...

Proving groups suck. Proving associating within groups makes you a bad person. Proving political parties literally create their own realities. And bad ones.

But that is negative. And I must control my thoughts. And I already know groups are not for me, not suitable for my psyche, nor my tender precious soul.

So here's something better.

I heard music through my neighbor's doors and that told me he is at home. I had been waiting for this situation. I went into my apartment and grabbed four calzones from the freezer. Went back, knocked on his door and offered them when he answered and he properly freaked the f out. Right out. He was NOT expecting anything like that.

You always expect trouble, don't you?

"You mentioned that you eat Hot Pockets so I brought over some calzones that I made."

"Dude. You're the best neighbor ever."

It worked! Bribery through food offerings. An ancient custom.

He probably closed the door and dropped them in the trash. Kidding. He flipped out with appropriate obvious glee. It saved him four Hot Pockets. And they're better. I bet.

(Actually I never had a Hot Pocket so mine might be worse far as I know.)

But wait 'till he tastes them. They really are outstanding. The dough is particularly pleasant when baked. They bake up very nicely. He's going to be amazed. I ate two and the whole time I was thinking, wow, these really are nice.

edutcher said...

Groups tend to have more to lose, so lying is more necessary.

also, since there are stratifications, lower levels feel compelled to lie to placate pointy-haired bosses.

ricpic said...

And yet all the best and the brightest of Europe and America still slavishly favor the collective over the individual.

AllenS said...

No shit. Ever been to a VFW?