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Mom Was Right -- If You Don't Have Anything Nice To Say About Someone, Don't Say Anything At All: The Boomerang Effect Of Gossip Is Discovered

Date:
March 19, 1998
Source:
American Psychological Association
Summary:
It appears to go against common sense -- not to mention classic psychological theory -- but researchers writing in the April edition of the American Psychological Association's (APA) Journal of Personality and Social Psychology say they have identified a common, but apparently mindless, psychological phenomenon that plays a previously unrecognized role in the way people form impressions of other people.

WASHINGTON -- It appears to go against common sense -- not to mention classic psychological theory -- but researchers writing in the April edition of the American Psychological Association's (APA) Journal of Personality and Social Psychology say they have identified a common, but apparently mindless, psychological phenomenon that plays a previously unrecognized role in the way people form impressions of other people. Specifically, they've found that when someone attributes positive or negative traits to someone else, the listener will often attribute those same traits to the speaker. "In other words," the authors write, "politicians who allege corruption by their opponents may themselves be perceived as dishonest, critics who praise artists may themselves be perceived as talented, and gossips who describe others' infidelities may themselves be viewed as immoral."


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The above story is based on materials provided by American Psychological Association. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


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American Psychological Association. "Mom Was Right -- If You Don't Have Anything Nice To Say About Someone, Don't Say Anything At All: The Boomerang Effect Of Gossip Is Discovered." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 19 March 1998. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1998/03/980319071139.htm>.
American Psychological Association. (1998, March 19). Mom Was Right -- If You Don't Have Anything Nice To Say About Someone, Don't Say Anything At All: The Boomerang Effect Of Gossip Is Discovered. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 19, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1998/03/980319071139.htm
American Psychological Association. "Mom Was Right -- If You Don't Have Anything Nice To Say About Someone, Don't Say Anything At All: The Boomerang Effect Of Gossip Is Discovered." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1998/03/980319071139.htm (accessed April 19, 2014).

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