Researchers think they’ve figured out why some people easily believe things that aren’t true.
Why are people so incredibly gullible?
“If you ever need proof of human gullibility, cast your mind back to the attack of the flesh-eating bananas. In January 2000, a series of chain emails began reporting that imported bananas were infecting people with “necrotizing fasciitis” – a rare disease in which the skin erupts into livid purple boils before disintegrating and peeling away from muscle and bone.”
Why Does the Vaccine/Autism Controversy Live On?
“Vaccines do not cause autism. That was the ruling in each of three critical test cases handed down on February 12 by the U.S. Court of Federal Claims in Washington, D.C. But these rulings, though seemingly definitive, have done little to quell the angry debate, which has severe implications for American public health.”
Making The Truth Stick and The Myths Fade: Lessons from Cognitive Psychology
“Erroneous beliefs are difficult to correct. Worse, popular correction strategies may backfire and further increase the spread and acceptance of misinformation. People evaluate the truth of a statement by assessing its compatibility with other things they believe, its internal consistency, amount of supporting evidence, acceptance by others, and the credibility of the source.”
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Written by: Chante Owens