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This paper examines the relationship between false information and the individual judgment. In particular, the paper explores whether doctored-video footage can compel people to give evidence about an occurrence they have not witnessed. The findings seem to support this assertion. Several researches have also shown evidence supporting this assertion. A study by Frost (2003) indicates that people tend to account for false information they witnessed on fabricated videotaped events.
The paper tends to assess whether false information is capable of influencing memories and beliefs held by people. The evidences that individuals are induced by false information or fabricated evidence to accuse another person or do something contrary to the expectations are common the literature (Wade et al., 2010). Scholars have been examining this relationship for sometime. In this paper, the major question that is being explored is whether, if individuals are exposed to fabricated-video footage could produce false eyewitness testimony. In other words, the findings of this paper will seek to answer the question of whether doctored-video footage can compel people to give evidence about an occurrence they have not witnessed.
Introduction and methodology
This paper examines the influence of false information on the individuals’ memories. Researches indicate that virtually all photograph recorders invent reality. Certainly, digital trickery is now a common knowledge (Wade et al., 2010). However, it is quite difficult to tell the fabricated-video footage from the real digital evidence. Further, there is enough evidence suggesting that false information can easily lead people to report witnessing events that did not actually happen (Wade et al., 2010). In most occasions, inaccurate reports concerning an event that never occurred have been given due to inaccurate or false information.
In an experiment, false information can emanate from various forms including the co-witness testimony or in a leading question (Wade et al., 2010). Though the current literature suggest a strong correlation between false information and presentation of events that did not actually happen, this paper uses newly developed experimental procedure to deeply examine the relationship. In essence, the paper will test whether individuals misleadingly blame a different individual of committing an offense when in actuality there are superficially genuine consequences.
While studying the relationship between false information and the reaction of individuals, the researcher used a different or an improved experiment. The procedure is an improved model and to reduce cheating errors, the participants were asked to complete the given task together with the confederate subject. In order to minimize technical mistakes, the participants remained deceived that their associates had lied on the assignment. Moreover, the control group was not told anything concerning the video evidence (Wade et al., 2010). All the subjects were then asked if they could substantiate the false accusation that they had witness their partner cheating. All these activities were aimed at improving the experimental procedure and to reduce as much as possible any inaccuracies in the study.
The sample of the study or the subjects consisted of university students comprising of 53% of female with the age ranging from 18-43 years. The sample were randomly picked and assigned to watch the video, see video or as control group. Each of these groups consisted of 20 participants. There were also two confederates oblivious of the group’s randomization and the hypothesis assisting in the study (Wade et al., 2010).
The groups were treated differently and under tight control in two phases. The videos recording used in the experiment were manipulated to create the doctored video. In other words, all the conditions necessary for the study were put in place and the control measures were observed before the experiment. Any possible error was also minimized greatly (Wade et al., 2010).
The result of the study
From the experiment, the results indicate that doctored images influences people’s ability to make mistakes a bout what has recently happened (Wade et al., 2010). In addition, the footage used in the experiment may have provided a graphic simplicity that enables the cheating events look familiar. In many occasions, people misattribute feelings of confidence for being familiar with something when thinking about that particular event. In turn, familiarity is erroneously understood for an indication that an event could have happened in the past (Wade et al., 2010). The final findings are that the video evidence offered an increased level of reliability to the assertion that the participants could have seen dishonesty.
The findings corroborated with the recent researches indicating that people assess the credibility of any proposition prior to its acceptance as a fact. In addition, the results concur with other findings from various researches that people can hold distorted beliefs about their experiences. Indeed, the results qualify the claims that the doctored video could induce people to testify about misdemeanor they never witnessed. In so doing, the accused stand to face the consequences (Wade et al., 2010). In addition, the results indicate that the subjects were well aware of the consequences of their actions more so to the accused. As can be observed, the findings have far-reaching implications for the policy makers, law enforcement officers as well as any practical individual who is convoluted in illegal or civil hearings wherein physical confirmations may have been represented (Wade et al., 2010).
The paper actually answered the main question put foreword. The sequential manner in which the paper examines the research question is clear. Moreover, the experimental procedure was clear and understandable. However, like many researches, there exist limitations and scope. For instance, the experiment could only use a small number of control subjects making it impossible to conduct meaningful statistical inferences (Wade et al., 2010). Far from these limitations, the measures put in place to ensure the experiment attain the intended goals are impressive. From the results, further studies are needed to examine how doctored images could be used to extort money from individuals. In other words, the findings from this paper open an avenue for array of related studies.
Apart from the general outlook, the paper did not follow the research design, which is fundamental in most peered reviewed academic journals. The introduction and methodology fail sort of the standard procedure as generally required in academic journals. For instance, the paper did not specify the data collection methods and analysis procedure in methodology. Moreover, the discussions required more quantifiable evidence to support the claims.
Besides these flaws, the paper findings are consistent with other studies that have been carried out on similar topic. For instance, Frost (2003) shows that people tend to account for false information they witnessed on fabricated videotaped events. This study indicated that people tend to affirm false information they witness unless they confirm after sometime. The confirmation may or may not encourage beliefs depending on the findings of the truth a bout the event (Frost, 2003).
Frost, P. (2003). Increasing false recognition rates with confirmatory feedback: A phenomenological analysis. The American Journal of Psychology, 116(4), 515-525.
Wade, K., Green, S. & Nash, R. (2010). Can fabricated evidence induce false eyewitness testimony? Applied Cognitive Psychology, 24(9), 899–908.