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Warnings to counter choice blindness for identification decisions: warnings offer an advantage in time but not in rate of detection

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Abstract

Choice blindness for identification decisions refers to the inability of eyewitnesses to detect that an originally recognized target was swapped for a non-identified lineup member. The robustness of the effect calls for measures that can prevent or reduce the negative consequences of choice blindness manipulations. Here, we investigated whether pre- and post-warnings given to participants about the possibility of mistakes reduces choice blindness for identification decisions. Participants (N = 119) were presented with identifications they never made and were asked to justify those decisions. Either before or after the presentation of the manipulated identification outcome, participants were or were not warned about the possibility of mistakes in the identification process. Although warnings were not sufficient to reduce choice blindness for identification decisions they provided a time-related detection advantage. Pre-warned participants questioned the legitimacy of the manipulated outcome sooner (i.e., concurrent detection) than participants in other conditions. Hence, pre-warnings can help detect mistakes in the identification procedure at an earlier stage, before they contaminate the memory of the witness and other pieces of evidence. From a theoretical stance, our findings attest to the strength of self-suggestion and indicate that choice blindness effects are deeply rooted in cognition.

    Research areas

  • Journal Article, MISINFORMATION, misinformation, EXPLICIT WARNINGS, EYEWITNESS IDENTIFICATION, pre-warning, ACCURACY, FACIAL RECOGNITION DECISIONS, CONTINUED INFLUENCE, enlightening, post-warning, choice blindness, MEMORY, LINEUP, META-ANALYSIS, FEEDBACK
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Details

Original languageEnglish
Article number981
Number of pages12
JournalFrontiers in Psychology
Volume9
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 13 Jun 2018