Informational social influence and the internet: manipulation in a consumptive society
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Type of Workapplication/pdf
vi, 52 pages
DepartmentTowson University. Department of Psychology
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Research on Informational Social Influence (ISI) has demonstrated that an individual's opinion can be shaped by others. Subsequent research has shown that an individual's sensory perceptions can be influenced in the same manner, with significant implications for consumer advertising. The present study extends the current body of literature on ISI by applying this premise to artwork evaluated over the Internet. In this study, 60 participants were randomly assigned to one of four groups wherein they were asked to evaluate a piece of artwork over the Internet while unsuspectingly utilizing confederate ratings that were manipulated by opinion and credibility. The results demonstrated that confederate ratings influenced a participant's evaluation of artwork; however, confederate expertise and the interaction were not significant. Ultimately, these data demonstrate that ISI can generalize to aesthetic qualities. That is, perceived beauty of a piece of artwork in an online context varies with external influence.