The negativity bias of the mainstream media has distorted the way society views people’s adherence to Covid’s social distancing rules, suggested a prominent psychologist.
Speaking on Radio Four Today, Professor Stephen Reicher said that the media’s propensity to believe that “ if it bleeds, it drives ” has led many outlets to focus on rule breakers and exaggerate how many people are breaking the rules. regulations. They believe that ‘if you bleed, lead’ has led many outlets to focus on rule breakers and thus exaggerate how many people are breaking regulations.
One shock, Reicher suggested, of the suggestion of a widespread rule violation is that it sets a negative norm and people think, ‘If everyone else is doing it, why shouldn’t I?’ ”.
The actual headline for the pandemic, Reicher proposed, is actually “worldly adherence.”
“This is the truth of the pandemic,” he tweeted. “Not the endless stories about a small minority of the so-called covidiots, but the heroic adherence of so many by so many.
Main image: A rainbow mural in Soho, London. Credit: Mike Kemp / Getty