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How would you have reacted?. What is the Bystander Effect?. The term bystander effect refers to the phenomenon in which the greater the number of people present, the less likely people are to help a person in distress.
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How would you have reacted?What is the Bystander Effect?
  • The term bystander effect refers to the phenomenon in which the greater the number of people present, the less likely people are to help a person in distress.
  • When an emergency situation occurs, observers are more likely to take action if there are few or no other witnesses.
  • Ex: Philly Subway CarTEN other passengers on the subway took no action during the attack except to get out of harms way. The attacker had has six year old son with him during the attack and made sure that his son was safely seated before turning to attack the surprised victimA Model of Bystander Intervention Notices           Interpret incident     Assume               Attempt to incident       as emergency responsibility help Based off of Research Studies...Factors that Influence HelpingNoticingThe first step required for a bystander to intervene is that they notice the situation at all.Ex: Smoke Room Study Predict what % of the subjects would respond to the smoke(ex: 90%, 40%, 3%) - STUDY #1In a series of classic studies, researchers Bibb Latane and John Darley found that the amount of time it takes the participant to take action and seek help varies depending on how many other observers are in the room. In one experiment, subjects were placed in one of three treatment conditions: As the participants sat filling out questionnaires, smoke began to fill the room...QUESTION - ON WHICH SITUATION WERE THEY MORE/LEAST LIKELY TO CHECK OUT WHETHER SMOKE POSED A THREAT? Alone in a room 75% calmly noticed the smoke and left the room to report it to experimentersWith two other subjects38% noticed smoke in a room and reported the smoke to experimenters
  • Other studies have shown that togethernessreduces fear even when the danger isn't reduced. It may have been that people in groups were less afraid and thus less likely to act. Or people were inhibited to show fear in a group situation.
  • With two confederates who pretended to be normal participants 10% noticed the smoke in room and reported the smoke to experimentersNoticingThe first step required for a bystander to intervene is that they notice the situation at all.Ex: Smoke Room StudyConclusion: In large groups, passers-by are more likely to be keeping their attention to themselves, than when alone, where people are more likely to be conscious of their surroundings and therefore more likely to notice a person in need of assistance.Situational ambiguity. In ambiguous situations, (i.e., it is unclear that there is an emergency) people are much less likely to offer assistance than in situations involv­ing a clear-cut emergencyex: People's reactions to a man and woman fighting in the street. When the woman yelled, "Get away from me; I don't know you," bystanders intervened 65 percent of the time, but only 19 percent of the time when the woman yelled "Get away from me; I don't know why I ever married you".They are also less likely to help in unfamiliar environments than in familiar ones (strange cities vs their hometowns).Severity of the victim'sneed and Environment or surroundings
  • In situations with low potential danger, more help was given in the solitary condition than in the bystander condition. (low danger, alone more likely to help)
  • However, in situations with high potential danger, participants confronted with an emergency alone or in the presence of another bystander were similarly likely to help the victim.
  • Conclusion: In situations of greater seriousness it is more likely that people will interpret the situation as one in which help is needed so that they will be more likely to intervene.
  • Perceived cost. The likelihood of helping increases as the perceived cost to our­selves declinesCalled Social-Exchange entails a person evaluating a sort of relationship that binds the benefit and cost of helping the person BEFORE they act in the situation.The helper desires to achieve optimal benefit at a low cost. ex: Lend our class notes to someone whom we believe will return them vs  to a person who doesn't appear trustworthy.Diffusion of responsibility. The presence of others may diffuse the sense of indi­vidual responsibility.ex:More people - less likely to receive helpLess people - more likely you will receive helpWith fewer people present, it becomes more difficult to point to the "other guy" as the one responsible for taking action. If everyone believes the other guy will act, then no one acts.Read about the studies,,,Similarity. People are more willing to help others whom they perceive to be similar to themselves—people who share a common background and beliefs. They are even more likely to help others who dress like they do than those in different attire (Cialdini & Trost, 1998). Peter – dressed in a suit compared to dressed as regular person/bumMood. People are generally more willing to help others when they are in a good mood (feel the genuine desire to help someone else in need) (Berkowitz, 1987). Relieve sense of guilt
  • People who want to feel better about themselves by relieving a sense of guilt they may have in order to have a more pure notion of themselves.
  • Ex: “I should have helped the time before, but now I can ‘redeem’ myself…”“I should help or I will have that nagging feeling all day”Gender. Despite changes in traditional gender roles, women in need are more likely than men in need to receive assistance from strangers (Benson, Karabenick, & Lerner, 1976).Attributions of the cause of needEx: Subway StudySTUDY #2Two male, two female experimenters (who took notes) boarded a subway train separately.
  • Two men stood - as train began to move, one of the men lurched forward and collapsed
  • (lay on floor, face up, staring at the ceiling until someone came to his aid)
  • IF NO ONE HELPED - the other male experimenter would eventually help the "victim" to his feet
  • Several Experiments - victim carried black cane and looked ill AND victim smelled like alcohol and carried bottle of liquor in brown paper bag
  • QUESTION - IN WHICH CONDITION WERE THEY MORE LIKELY TO HELP?PREDICTIONS?The victim with the cane received help 95% of the time and usually within 5 secondsThe "drunk" received help 50% of the time after an average of 1 1/2 minutesExplanation as to why?Drunk was responsible for his own plight Helping drunk may involve greater cost (e.g. turn aggressive)People are much more likely to help others they judge to be innocent victims than those they believe have brought their prob­lems on themselves(Batson, 1998). Thus, they may fail to lend assistance to homeless people and drug addicts whom they feel "deserve what they get.“Attributions of the cause of needEx: Subway StudySocial norms (def: Prescribe behaviors that are expected of people in social situations)The social norm of "doing your part" in help­ing a worthy cause places a demand on people to help, especially in situations where their behavior is observed by others (Gaulin & McBurney, 2001).  Reciprocity normAs social norms idealize how we ought to be behave, this norm suggests how we act in service to someone else because they had previously done it for us. ORSocial norms (def: Prescribe behaviors that are expected of people in social situations)Social-responsibility norm. This agent is different from the reciprocity norm in that we are aware of no trading services for one another. This norm best illustrates altruism (unselfish helping) because it suggests that will we be inspired to help someone in need and never ask for or expect anything in return. Notable (and Tragic) ExamplesKitty Genovese
  • New York City woman who was stabbed to death near her home on March 13, 1964
  • Coming home from her job working as a bar manager early in the morning
  • As she walked towards the building she was approached by Winston Moseley
  • Attacked her 3 separate times
  • Witnesses did nothing until AFTER the ambulance left
  • Investigation lead to defining the Bystander Effect
  • Notable (and Tragic) ExamplesDeath of Axel Casian
  • On June 16, 2008, on a country road outside Turlock, California, friends, family and strangers, including a volunteer fire chief, stood by as Sergio Aguiar methodically stomped his two-year-old son Axel Casian to death,explaining in a calm voice that he "had to get the demons out" of the boy. He stopped at one point to turn on the hazard lights on his truck.
  • Notable (and Tragic) ExamplesAxel Casiancon’t
  • No one moved to take the child or attack Aguiar. Witnesses said they were all afraid to intervene because Aguiar "might have something in his pocket", although some people looked for rocks or boards hoping to find something to subdue him.
  • The fire chief's fiancée called 911.
  • Police officer Jerry Ramar arrived by helicopter and told Aguiar to stop. Aguiar gave Ramar the finger and Ramar shot him in the head.
  • Notable (and Tragic) ExamplesAxel Casiancon’t
  • Police officers and psychologists later explained that the inaction of the crowd was justified in that "ordinary people aren't going to tackle a psychotic," that they were not "psychologically prepared" to intervene, and that being frozen in indecision and fear is a normal reaction.
  • Notable (and Tragic) ExamplesEsmin Green, Kings County Hospital
  • In June 2008 49-year-old Esmin Green collapsed in the waiting room of Kings County Hospital Center in Brooklyn after waiting nearly 24 hours for treatment. She was ignored by other people present in the room and two security guards. People tried to help her only after an hour had passed. Ms. Green died.
  • The hospital staff falsified their records to minimize the time she had lain on the floor unaided. Kings County Hospital had been previously cited for unsanitary conditions and patient neglect.
  • Notable (and Tragic) Examples
  • Hugo Alfredo Tale-Yax
  • In April 2010 Hugo Alfredo Tale-Yax was stabbed to death in New York City after coming to the aid of a woman who was being attacked by a robber. Yax was on the sidewalk for more than an hour before firefighters arrived. Almost twenty-five people walked by while he lay dying on a sidewalk in Queens, several stared at Yax; one of them took pictures, however none of them helped or called emergency services.
  • Notable (and Tragic) ExamplesRaymond Zack
  • On Memorial Day, 2011, Raymond Zack walked into the waters off of Robert Crown Memorial Beach and stood neck deep in water roughly 150 yards offshore for almost an hour.
  • His foster mother, Dolores Berry, called 9-1-1 and said that he was trying to drown himself. (There are conflicting reports about Zack's intentions.)
  • Notable (and Tragic) Examples
  • Firefighters and police responded but did not enter the water. The firefighters called for a United States Coast Guard boat to respond to the scene.
  • According to police reports, Alameda police expected the firefighters to enter the water.
  • Firefighters later said that they did not have current training and certifications to perform land-based water rescue.
  • Notable (and Tragic) Examples
  • Dozens of civilians on the beach, and watching from their homes across from the beach, did not enter the water, apparently expecting public safety officers to conduct a rescue.
  • Eventually, Zack collapsed in the water, apparently from hypothermia.
  • Even then, nobody entered the water for several minutes. Finally, a good Samaritan entered the water and pulled Zack to shore, after which he died.
  • Notable (and Tragic) ExamplesWang Yue
  • In October 2011, a two-year-old girl was hit by a small, white van in China and then run over by a large truck when she was not moved by bystanders.
  • A total of 18 people ignored her, some going so far as to walk around the blood, and the girl was left for 7 minutes before a recycler, Chen Xianmei, picked up the toddler and called for help.
  • The child died eight days later
  • Notable (and Tragic) ExamplesISU Professor Said ByStander Effect Explains New York Post Subway Death PhotoArticle
  • “The victim, after all, is not dead yet, but frozen in time moments before his doom, and the haunting photograph is a grim reminder that no one -- including the Post photographer -- reached out to save him”
  • Bystanders Doing Good Examples
  • Bystanders rushed to the aid of a Denison, TX woman who was stabbed during an altercation Monday afternoon, trying to protect woman from further injuries.
  • Bystander - "I had a concealed carry permit so I grabbed my weapon, ran down the road, saw a man down the street waving a bowie knife around chasing people"
  • Several bystanders rushed to the woman's aid and worked to disarm the man.
  • "I kicked the knife out of his hand, kicked him in the face, pinned him to the ground and some other people helped me hold him there till the cops got there" bystander said
  • "I just did what anybody else would've done"
  • Bystanders Doing Good ExamplesCrews said bystanders helped the peopleinside escape the car, which had landed on its roof.Two bystanders performed CPR to revive a man after he fell off his bicycle at the edge of the Southdale Shopping Center parking lot Wednesday night - Mary Jo Tingle told police she saw the man lose control of the bicycle near a parking lot exit to Mountain Road, where he hit a curb and flew off the bike.Who is Chad Lindsey?
  • Rescued a man who'd fallen on the C train tracks
  • of Penn Station
  • Chad saw a man accidentally fall onto the subway tracks. “He stopped and kind of reeled around. I felt bad, because I couldn’t get close enough to grab his coat. He fell, and immediately hit his head on the rail and passed out.”
  • Without giving it a second thought or having concern for his own life, he immediately dropped everything and jumped down to help him. The man was bleeding, so Chad called for assistance. Then sensing that a train was approaching, Chad quickly moved into action and lifted him up off the tracks to safety
  • Should we forced people to help?
  • Seinfeld Episode – Good Samaritan Law
  • Good Samaritan laws are real and common, but they do not work the way Seinfeld portrayed them.
  • Instead, they usually shield would-be heroes from liability if their attempts to rescue a victim fail or even hurt the victim further.
  • They protect Good Samaritans — they don’t force people to become them.What do you think?Should there be a law requiring people to help (in reasonable situations or in ALL situations)? Why or why not?Let’s look at David CashThe Bad Samaritan
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