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Examples of the Bystander Effect

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July 30, 2007
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Comments are not for promoting your articles or other sites. I'm not a police officer, not my job. My job is going to be navy seal!!! Hi we are learning Bystander affect in 5th grade Advanced Language Arts. This helped a lot. This is an uncomfortable but important subject to discuss.

It's important to stand up for what is right and not be ruled by what is easy, "safe" or acceptable. Kitty's was a tragic case and one that I'm sure has been repeated many times.

Thanks for this well-written and interesting Hub. Boulism, this is a very powerful article and well written. It makes you think. Are we our brother's keeper -- at all times? What we do in every circumstance defines us more than anything else. We are not perfect, but striving to do the right thing makes us better people.

Voted up and shared! I hear ya, I'm better than I used to be, but I still sometime "flee" because I'm not so sure how to handle a situation. I have passed by some situations and after that I feel strange since I do not know what I should have done. I think it is a testament to the fact that racism is alive and well in America.

I was horrified, but not surprised. I was very surprised by the smoking room video, as I would have been directing everyone out of the door in an orderly fashion! I will admit that it is uncomfortable helping people in need, but I try to when I can.

Recently, my husband and I helped a women who did not have enough gas to make it to her family for Christmas. She had been stuck in a McDonald's parking lot for days. We took her and filled up her tank and gave her some money to get something to eat.

Of course, maybe I only helped because my husband was with me, but I like to think it is because I am able to push past the discomfort. I saw the three videos and they were so true. I recall the one where the girl with the dark hair is sitting and there's smoke coming into the room. She just keeps sitting and looking around.

I'd be really scared if I saw smoke. I agree that it is somewhat disheartening, but that's what makes it so interesting to me: Bless you for not being one of those people. It is a strange and sad phenomenon. I am kind of a nut, I guess. I am the one who butts in when I see someone needs help.

Sometimes it has been a bit dangerous in hindsight but there is something that won't let me not. That being said, I do not know what I would do if someone were being raped and beaten except this I know I would call the police. Would I go out and risk being involved physically? I do not know. I hope I do not have to make that decision. Thanks so much for your input.

I teach Psychology to High School students and have always found this to be one of the most interesting concepts. The confederates were instructed to give the same wrong answer when they were asked to estimate the line length.

The participants saw that the other people in the group gave an obviously wrong answer. Since every person in the group gave the same wrong answer, the participants became uncomfortable as seen on the footage of the experiment , and seemed to doubt their initial observation. Then, when the turn came for the participants to estimate the line length, the majority of the test subjects gave the same wrong answer that the rest of the group had given.

The subjects were visibly upset by the discrepancy between their perceptions, and those of others, and most caved under the pressure to conform: This technique was a powerful lens for examining the social construction of reality, and gave rise to decades of research on conformity.

McLeod When someone is socially influenced, they are pressured consciously or subconsciously to conform to the ways of the crowd. In the mind of the subject the crowd group becomes more important than the individual, and the maintenance of the status quo of the group appears to become the highest priority of the individual.

The individual changes how they behave because they seek approval and friendship of others. Then thoughts of social reward and punishment make a person chose to do something they are asked to do. The thought of social rewards and punishments lead the people to obey the order from someone they accept as an authority figure. If a woman is being stabbed repeatedly and everyone is merely watching, you might also just watch and not take any action because you are merely maintaining the status quo.

This experiment focused on obedience of people. His subjects were ordinary people off the street whose jobs ranged from unskilled workers to professionals. The subjects were told that they are participating in an experiment which studied the effects of punishment on test scores.

The student and teacher were led to separate rooms so that the teachers could not see the student. The teachers were instructed by a person in a white laboratory coat the authority figure to deliver electric shocks to the student when the he got an answer wrong on a test. Each time the student answered a question incorrectly, the teacher was instructed to increase the level of voltage used to shock the student. The voltages for the shocks ranged from a very mild level—which only caused some discomfort—to a level high enough to be lethal.

At the beginning of the experiment, the teachers administered the shocks to the student without thinking twice about the pain or discomfort they may be causing. As the voltage level of the shocks increased, the level of discomfort of the teachers also increased.

At a certain voltage level the student was instructed to yell out and complain that the shocks were painful and that he did not want to participate in the experiment any more. These cries startled the teachers and increased their discomfort. Almost every participant confronted the person in the white lab coat, asking him to check on the student and stop the experiment since the person was obviously in pain. In response to their entreaties, the authority figure in the white lab coat informed them that the experiment must continue and that the teachers will not be held accountable for the pain the shocks brought to the student.

Two-thirds of the participants delivered lethal-level shocks to the student after they were told to do so by an authority figure. The authority figure did not threaten the participants to induce them to continue the experiment. Nor did they tell them that they are not allowed to stop the experiment.

The participants were simply told that the electro shock was imperative to the experiment that the teachers keep going. The participants were clearly unwilling to knowingly cause pain to the student; however, they were influenced by the authority figure and acquiesced to continue.

Diffusion of responsibility and social influence creates an excuse for bystanders to avoid intervening in a situation. Another key factor in the understanding of the Bystander effect is pluralistic ignorance.

In other words, unpopular moral principles influence an individual because they are mistakenly thought to be the view of the majority of the group. The actual thoughts, actions, beliefs and norms of the crowd are misjudged by individuals.

This leads the entire group of to act on certain principles because they believe those principles are held in high esteem by the rest of the group.

This creates a false group atmosphere in which no one acts on his own principles, and instead obeys the principles he wrongly believe are important to the rest of the group. Pluralistic ignorance is dangerous when a life is in jeopardy. Intervention is very hard to achieve when the group creates a false atmosphere in an emergency situation. A classic example of pluralistic ignorance is demonstrated almost daily in the classroom setting.

When a teacher explains a complicated assignment or a difficult concept, he expects that the students will raise questions about anything which may be unclear. Fear of intimidation and desire to cover up the evils of the institution made him not to report to the police.

Definition of Roles Various counteract mechanisms have been proposed by social scientists and psychologists. However, one appraisable mechanism is definition of the roles strategy. This defines the person as the one to help. The moment he steps forward to help, the rest of the people will follow to salvage the situation. Security of witnesses Last, bystanders may fail to report criminal activities for the fear they might be apprehended as acquaintances to the criminals.

It is vital for law enforcement authorities to ensure security of witnesses who report criminal incidents. The reporters should not be incriminated. This would give people a confidence to stand out beyond bystander effect and report criminal cases.

Conclusion The crime in which Kitty was murdered in the presence of 38 witnesses who refused to inform the police brings out the issue of bystander effect. May be the witnesses feared being implicated or the lack of defined roles in the incident derailed their response. The observation is a call for understanding the bystander priciple in order to help future situations. B Introduction This is an illustration of the murder of Kitty indicating why the witnesses did not get involved.

No one is usually ready to take the first step. Whereas the actions of the people who witnessed the murder of Kitty might be viewed as careless, it is imperative to point out that people cared.

Majority of the people, who were present when the murder took place in , assert that they did not want to get involved. One of the witnesses interviewed, said she did not want her husband to get involved. It is a social convention that people tend to avoid situations, which appear to contravene the ethics and norms within the social group.

Every person thinks that the other person can probably do it better than he can. Because in a group there are defined duties, it is the responsibility of any person to take up a responsibility. However, if Kitty could have called out a name, the person could have helped. Other people could have also followed to offer assistance. People will hesitate to participate in activities, which appear to be socially unacceptable. It is clear that people tend to participate in activities where they seem to blend with social composition.

People are not aware that other people in the group of witnesses might be looking up to them to offer assistance. All the people end up looking up to each other and ultimately no volunteer who comes up.

The aspect spreads the responsibility to offer help to all people. Hence, the more people present the less likelihood that any one will help. However, the case points out how strongly people are inclined to social norms, as they had better fail to help, but conform to the norms. This compounds the problem instead of assisting.

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Does the bystander effect contribute to the increasing number of crime as criminals nowadays are braver and know that our society today has a bystander mind set? What are the ways to counter or put an end to this problem? What are the ways the authority can do to create awareness of the bystander effect?

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- Bystander effect, (Darley & Latane, ) refers to decrease in helping response when there are bystanders around relative to no bystanders. Referring to previous study stating that there are some cases of which group size may promote helping instead of hindering it (Fischer et al., ).

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Bystander Effect Introduction The bystander effect is a social psychological occurrence that refers to scenarios where individuals do not provide help during emergency cases . In the following paragraphs, this essay will discuss the causes of the bystander effect, including, diffusion of responsibility, unclear perceptions, and the disregard of alarms. When this story appeared in the papers around the country, the public was outraged at what had taken place/5(5).

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Bystander Effect Essay Examples. 2 total results. An Analysis of the Bystander Effect and Diffusion of Reponsibility. 1, words. 4 pages. The Bystander Effect and the Different Factors that Influenced My Personal Experience with the Genovese Syndrome. words. 1 page. The bystander effect Essay Words 5 Pages In the early morning hours of March 13, , twenty-eight year old barmaid Catherine "Kitty" Genovese was murdered and raped on the street in Kew Gardens, New York.