Saturday, 1 April 2017
Read? Why are some people more gullible than others?
Gullibility occurs because we have evolved to deal with information using two fundamentally different systems, according to Nobel Prize winning psychologist Daniel Kahneman.
System 1 thinking is fast, automatic, intuitive, uncritical and promotes accepting anecdotal and personal information as true.
This was a useful and adaptive processing strategy in our ancestral environment of small, face-to-face groups, where trust was based on life-long relationships. However, this kind of thinking can be dangerous in the anonymous online world.
CW8888: Hmm ...
Do "bei kampings" know the difference between small group face-to-face talking session and broadcasting seminars?
System 2 thinking is a much more recent human achievement; it is slow, analytical, rational and effortful, and leads to the thorough evaluation of incoming information.
While all humans use both intuitive and analytic thinking, system 2 thinking is the method of science, and is the best available antidote to gullibility. So, education tends to reduce gullibility and those who receive scientific training in critical, sceptical thinking also tend to be less gullible and less easily manipulated.
Differences in trust can also influence gullibility. This may be related to early childhood experiences, with the idea that trust in infancy sets the stage for a lifelong expectation the world will be a good and pleasant place to live.