Deindividuating effects of group presence and arousal on stealing by Halloween trick-or-treaters
Diener, E., Westford, K. L., Diener, C., & Beaman, A. L. (1973). Deindividuating effects of group presence and arousal on stealing by Halloween trick-or-treaters. In H. D. Lindgren (Ed.), Children's behavior: An introduction to research studies (pp. 228-233). Palo Alto, CA: Mayfield. (Also appeared in 1973 APA Convention Proceedings)
Conducted a field experiment on Halloween evening to assess the effects of physiological arousal and group presence on stealing by children. Over 800 trick-or-treaters were given an opportunity to steal extra candy and were unobtrusively monitored by concealed raters. As Zimbardo's theory of deindividuation would predict, both arousal and group presence led to significantly more stealing, and there was a significant (p < .001) interaction between these 2 variables.
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