Category Archives: Social psychology

5 reasons why “predictive programming” is psychologically implausible

If you think that popular culture – movies, TV, and music – have been kind of samey lately, you’re not alone. Peter Suderman at Slate has proposed that most summer blockbusters follow the same basic formula laid out in a … Continue reading

Posted in Social psychology | Tagged , , , , , , , | 142 Comments

Childhood vaccinations: What is the role of conspiracy theorising?

On Wednesday 26th June 2013, I attended a thought-provoking symposium where international experts in psychology, anthropology and communication sciences came together to describe current trends in public attitudes towards childhood vaccination. The symposium accurately titled ‘Public engagement and risk communication … Continue reading

Posted in Events, Social psychology | 5 Comments

21% of US voters believe Obama is the Anti-Christ : The problem with conspiracy polling

A recent poll by ‘Public Polling Policy’, (despite the name, a private US polling company) conducted an automated telephone poll of 1247 registered US voters and asked respondents a variety of questions about their belief in various popular conspiracy theories. The … Continue reading

Posted in 9/11, Round-Ups, Social psychology, What's the harm, World events | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

“The Great Green Con”: Pro-conspiracy information within the media

This morning I came across a news article that read so similar to my pro-conspiracy manipulation used within a recent paper, it was quite unnerving. I have spoken about this paper before on this blog, where it was shown that exposure … Continue reading

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Authoritarianism and conspiracy theories – what’s the connection? Is there one?

Although I don’t do it as much as I used to, I still enjoy arguing about conspiracy theories with people on the Internet. As I’m generally pretty skeptical of conspiracy explanations, I usually find myself defending whatever the conventional explanation … Continue reading

Posted in Personality, Social psychology | Tagged , , , , , | 22 Comments

Conspiracy beliefs and TV licences: ‘Turning off’ engagement

As blogged about previously, conspiracy theories are influential and exposure to such theories can influence both beliefs and behavioural intentions in a variety of domains. However, a recent news story caught my attention, as it clearly demonstrated a sense of detachment with … Continue reading

Posted in 9/11, Social psychology, What's the harm | Tagged , , | 6 Comments

Alex Jones and the “Monological Belief System”

In the recent weeks following the tragedy of the Sandy Hook shooting, we have seen many different viewpoints expressed regarding the fiercely debated issue of US gun control. In particular, one of the most controversial and volatile interviews came from … Continue reading

Posted in Social psychology, World events | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 21 Comments

Mass shooting conspiracy theories: Newtown, competence, and politics

As the conspiracy theories around the mass shooting in Newtown, Connecticut continue to grow, Rob’s insightful post from a couple of days ago has generated a lot of interest. We can talk about evidence or lack of evidence as much … Continue reading

Posted in Social psychology, World events | Tagged , , , | 11 Comments

The influence of conspiracy information: Beliefs & Intentions

Conspiracy theories are influential. Empirical work, both of my own and other scholars have indeed shown that this is the case. Whilst watching “Did we land on the moon” on channel 5 last night, I therefore wondered what influence this … Continue reading

Posted in Events, Social psychology | Tagged , , , , , , | 19 Comments

When Prophecy Fails in the Digital Age

Hello all! Blog introductions are always awkward, so I’ll just say that my name is Mike Wood and I’m another contributor to this blog. I’m currently a Ph.D. Student at the University of Kent, working with Karen Douglas alongside Dan. … Continue reading

Posted in Social psychology | Tagged , , , , | 5 Comments