I See Psychology… Everywhere

Mark Foley Party Errors–Intentional or Schema-Based?

foxoreilly_markfoleydem_100306.jpgOne of the things my students and I frequently discuss is the extent to which discriminatory, erroneous, or otherwise unexpected behavior is intentional or not. I may be naive, but I tend to err on the side of assuming that most prejudice and the like are unintentional, or even unknown to the perpetrator.

Well, in the midst of the Mark Foley scandal, which obviously is ripe with psychology, some people with the stomach to watch Fox News noticed that the channel “erred” in labeling Foley as “D-FL.” The accurate tag, of course, would be “R-FL.” Nevertheless, this label remained for a while, and when it was corrected, unlike with CNN, which apparently briefly made the same mistake and announced the correction.

Now, the discounting principle would lead us to lend less credence to Fox’s potential argument of an innocent mistake. But if it was innocent, it may be that a conservative schema led producers (or whoever writes those descriptions) to act on the implicit belief that scandals are Democrat territory or that they were dissociating from Foley. Either way, it doesn’t bode well for the objectivity that most of us would like to see in the media!

via bradblog


6 October 2006 - Posted by | Cognitive, Social

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