The process of selective exposure: Why confirmatory information processing weakens over time
Lea, Stephen E.G.
Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes
NOTICE: this is the author’s version of a work that was accepted for publication in Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes. Changes resulting from the publishing process, such as peer review, editing, corrections, structural formatting, and other quality control mechanisms may not be reflected in this document. Changes may have been made to this work since it was submitted for publication. A definitive version was subsequently published in Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Vol. 114, Issue 1, pp. 37–48, January 2011 DOI: 10.1016/j.obhdp.2010.09.001
The present research investigated whether the tendency to prefer decision-consistent to decision-inconsistent information after making a preliminary choice would vary during the sequential process of searching for additional pieces of decision-relevant information. Specifically, it was tested whether decision makers would be more confirmatory in their information evaluation and search at the commencement rather than end of an information search process. In fact, five studies revealed that participants exhibited stronger confirmatory tendencies in both information evaluation (Studies 2 and 5) and search (Studies 1, 3, and 4) immediately after making a preliminary decision compared to during the later stages of an information search process. With regard to the underlying mechanism, results further revealed that individuals appear to be more motivated to detect the best decision alternative at the beginning (as opposed to the end) of an information search process, which leads to increases in confirmatory information processing during these stages.
Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Vol. 114, Iss.1, pp. 37–48