Texting not only convenient, makes us more honest too

Next time you're trying to get the truth of someone, shoot him a text message. A new study shows that people are more truthful via text message than in regular conversation. For those keeping score, texting is good for truth-telling, bad for driving.

The University of Michigan Institute for Social Research performed a study, funded by the National Science Foundation, of 600 iPhone users who were recruited via Craigslist, Google Ads and Amazon's Mechanical Turk. They were given iTunes Store awards for participation.

During the study, participants were asked a series of questions to find if they answered more honestly via text or voice.

The questions requested information such as frequency of exercise and drinking (to test honesty) and more numerical information such as number of movies seen in a month or iTunes owned (to check precision).

The research showed people answered more honestly and more precisely via text message. The precision aspect of the experiment makes sense, but the honesty aspect raises questions as to accuracy of the testing (to test honesty, there has to be self-reporting, which is notorious for bias and error).

Nonetheless, if you think you can handle the truth (and want it quickly and conveniently), texting might be the way to go.

Via Huffington Post

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