People lie more on the phone than by email
Communications technologies are far from equal when it comes to conveying the truth. The first study to compare honesty across a range of communications media has found that people are twice as likely to tell lies in phone conversations as they are in emails.
Jeff Hancock of Cornell University in Ithaca, New York, asked 30 students to keep a communications diary for a week. In it they noted the number of conversations or email exchanges they had lasting more than 10 minutes, and confessed to how many lies they told.
Hancock then worked out the number of lies per conversation for each medium. He found that lies made up 14 per cent of emails, 21 per cent of instant messages, 27 per cent of face-to-face interactions and a whopping 37 per cent of phone calls.
People appear to be afraid to lie when they know the communication could later be used to hold them to account, he says. This is why fewer lies appear in email than on the phone.
People are also more likely to lie in real time - in an instant message or phone call, say - than if they have time to think of a response, says Hancock. He found many lies are spontaneous responses to an unexpected demand, such as: "Do you like my dress?"
Примечание: В "творческом" переводе 3dnews.ru фраза "lies made up 14 per cent of emails" превратилась в "14% лжи приходится на e-mail". Дремавший во мне года с 1998-го статистик изрёк пару непечатных слов и вернулся к своему основному и любимому занятию.