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Preference, projection, and packing: Support theory models of judgments of others' preferences

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  • Brenner, Lyle
  • Bilgin, Baler
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    Abstract

    People frequently need to predict the preferences of others. Such intuitive predictions often show social projection, in which one's own preference for an option increases its perceived popularity among others. We use support theory to model social projection in the prediction of preferences, and in particular interactions between social projection and description-dependence. Preferred options are predicted to have consistently high salience, and therefore should be less susceptible to description variations, such as unpacking, which normally affect option salience. This preference salience premise implies an interaction between social projection and option description, with reduced unpacking effects for hypotheses including preferred options, or equivalently, with reduced social projection when less-liked alternatives are unpacked. Support theory models accommodating different preference-dependent unpacking effects are tested. These models distinguish two substantial contributors to social projection effects: (a) greater evidence recruited for preferred options and (b) greater discounting of packed less-preferred options.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes.

    Volume (Year): 115 (2011)
    Issue (Month): 1 (May)
    Pages: 121-132

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:jobhdp:v:115:y:2011:i:1:p:121-132

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    Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/obhdp

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    Keywords: Social prediction Social projection False consensus Probability judgment Support theory;

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    1. Childers, Terry L & Rao, Akshay R, 1992. " The Influence of Familial and Peer-Based Reference Groups on Consumer Decisions," Journal of Consumer Research, University of Chicago Press, vol. 19(2), pages 198-211, September.
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    3. David Faro & Yuval Rottenstreich, 2006. "Affect, Empathy, and Regressive Mispredictions of Others' Preferences Under Risk," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 52(4), pages 529-541, April.
    4. Hoch, Stephen J, 1988. " Who Do We Know: Predicting the Interests and Opinions of the American Consumer," Journal of Consumer Research, University of Chicago Press, vol. 15(3), pages 315-24, December.
    5. Bearden, William O & Etzel, Michael J, 1982. " Reference Group Influence on Product and Brand Purchase Decisions," Journal of Consumer Research, University of Chicago Press, vol. 9(2), pages 183-94, September.
    6. Dawes, Robyn M. & Mulford, Matthew, 1996. "The False Consensus Effect and Overconfidence: Flaws in Judgment or Flaws in How We Study Judgment?," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 65(3), pages 201-211, March.
    7. West, Patricia M, 1996. " Predicting Preferences: An Examination of Agent Learning," Journal of Consumer Research, University of Chicago Press, vol. 23(1), pages 68-80, June.
    8. Tversky, Amos & Kahneman, Daniel, 1986. "Rational Choice and the Framing of Decisions," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 59(4), pages S251-78, October.
    9. Koehler, Derek J., 1996. "A Strength Model of Probability Judgments for Tournaments," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 66(1), pages 16-21, April.
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