The Impact of Collective Opinion on Online Judgment

Proceedings of the 32nd Annual Conference of the Cognitive Science Society (pp. 1869-1874). Austin, TX: Cognitive Science Society, August 2010

6 Pages Posted: 24 Sep 2012

Date Written: 2010

Abstract

Social media are part of our everyday lives. These technologies allow people to share their opinions with others. Here I examine whether the opinions posted online actually change people's perception of the world or they simply serve as anchors when people post their own opinions. Participants rated the interestingness of given stories. In one condition, the stories were presented with invented average ratings of others that matched the rating task. In another condition, the assumed opinions of others mismatched the rating task. Only in the task match condition, people used the opinions of others when rating the stories. The results suggest that the other's opinions are used as anchors when making judgments and do not influence people’s perception as much as one may expect. The current work provides insights into cognitive mechanisms underlying collective behavior in online environments as well as a lesson for users and designers of social media websites.

Keywords: Collective opinion, online judgment, social influence, anchoring and adjustment

Suggested Citation

Sakamoto, Yasuaki, The Impact of Collective Opinion on Online Judgment (2010). Proceedings of the 32nd Annual Conference of the Cognitive Science Society (pp. 1869-1874). Austin, TX: Cognitive Science Society, August 2010. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2150642

Yasuaki Sakamoto (Contact Author)

AXA Direct Japan ( email )

Japan

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