How Does Misinformation Influence Our Memories of Events? - Deepstash

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How Does Misinformation Influence Our Memories of Events?

How Does Misinformation Influence Our Memories of Events?


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The misinformation effect

The misinformation effect is when information received after an event interferes with one's memory of the actual happenings. Research shows that subtle details later on can dramatically change how people remember.

This effect shows how easily memories are influenced. It then questions the r...

Misinformation effect example

In a famous experiment, participants were shown video footage of a traffic accident. Then participants were asked several questions about what they had seen.

  • Some participants were asked, "How fast were the cars going when they hit each other?"

There are different theories why the misinformation effect happens, potentially leading to false memories.

  1. The original facts and information after the fact get blended together in a person's memory.
  2. Misleading information replaces the original memory.
  3. Since misleading ...

Factors influencing the misinformation effect

Factors that make it more likely that event happenings will be distorted and lead to false memories:

  • Discussing the event with other witnesses. Conflicting reports might reshape or distort a witness's original memory of the event.
  • Reading or watching ne...

  • One strategy is to write down your memory of an important event immediately after it happens. Keep in mind that subtle errors can still slip in and further cement them in your memory.
  • Another is to be aware that your memory can be influenced and that everyone is susceptible to the mi...

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