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Caveat Emptor! False Advertising and Memory
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Caveat Emptor! False Advertising and Memory

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  1. Caveat Emptor!False Advertising and Memory Melissa J. Grinley University of Washington

  2. Acknowledgements • Elizabeth F. Loftus and Jacquie Pickrell • Susan Joslyn, Ayanna Thomas, Margaret Marshall • My wonderful research assistants: Shawn Chen, Serena Lin, Elizabeth Stewart, Nadya Zawaideh, and Lisa Page • Donna Golshan

  3. Previous Research • Braun, Ellis & Loftus (2002) • Bugs Bunny at a Disney resort

  4. Braun et al. “Met Bugs” Confidence: M = 2.7 M = 2.2

  5. Goals of Present Experiment • Boost the false memory effect with multiple exposures to false advertising • Learn more about quality of false memories- How much detail is remembered?

  6. Study Design BUGS AD

  7. Bugs Bunny Ad

  8. Study Design BUGS AD CONTROL AD

  9. Control Ad

  10. Study Design BUGS AD CONTROL AD BUGS AD STORIES CONTROL AD STORIES

  11. Ad Stories Example • “Remember when you were a kid and Disneyland was the happiest place on earth?….Disney characters such as Mickey Mouse, Bugs Bunny and Goofy greeting you at the gates.”

  12. Procedure n = 101 n = 98 BUGS AD CONTROL AD BUGS AD STORIES CONTROL AD STORIES • MET BUGS? • Yes/No Judgement • Confidence (1-8) SPECIFIC MEMORIES

  13. Specific Memories: Bugs Bunny Did you shake his hand? Y N DK Did you hug him? Y N DK Was he holding a carrot? Y N DK Did he say ‘What’s up Doc?’ Y N DK Did you touch his tail? Y N DK Did you touch his ears? Y N DK

  14. Results • 101 participants in experimental group, 98 in control group • 5 ‘Bugs Detectors’ removed from experimental group, final count: n = 96 • Data were analyzed for: • Met Bugs (Y/N)? • Confidence met Bugs (1-8)? • Specific Memories

  15. Percentage of Participants who Said They Met Bugs at a Disney Resort 2 (1, N = 85) = 9.36, p = .002

  16. Mean Confidence Ratings for Meeting Bugs at Disney t(87) = 3.15,p = .002

  17. Percentage of Participants who indicated Specific Memories of Bugs Bunny(N = 13) Measure Yes No DK Shake his hand? 628 233 152 Hug him? 466 466 81 Touch his ears? 233 547 233 Touch his tail? 233 466 314 ‘What’s up Doc?’ 233 314 466 Holding a carrot? 81 152 7710

  18. To summarize, the viewing of false Bugs Bunny ad suggests: • Greater likelihood of Ss saying they had met Bugs at a Disney resort • Increased confidence that they had met Bugs Bunny • For some, formation of specific memories of details of their experience

  19. Implications • Advertising enhances perceived validity (Law & Hawkins, 1997) • Ads that evoke nostalgia may alter true memories or even create false ones

  20. Subjects’ responses to the question “Do you think you remembered things differently because of the advertising?”: • “I don’t know if I met any characters, but reading about meeting them makes me think I did”. • “I have more memories of my trip when I was young now, don’t know if they're real.” • “I remember characters which I don't usually remember meeting when I went to Disneyland.”

  21. That’s all, folks!