Cyber culture: Study for suspicious minds - delay in texting replies implies deceit
Rhodri Marsden is the Technology Columnist for The Independent; he has also written about crumpets, Captain Beefheart, rude place names and string. He's also a musician who plays in the band Scritti Politti, and won the under-10 piano category at the 1980 Watford Music Festival by playing a piece called "Silver Trumpets" with verve and aplomb.
Wednesday 11 September 2013
More research, this time from Brigham Young University in Utah, which suggests that untruthful text messages take longer to compose than truthful ones. The study demonstrated that respondents took around 10 per cent longer to tap out their lies than their truthful answers.
We all know that swift replies to text messages are reassuring indicators of honesty and openness. Most of the time. But the revelation contained within this study adds a whole new layer of intrigue to the issue of unanswered text messages.
When a reply eventually appears on our smartphone screen after we've been waiting all afternoon, is that because the other person didn't see their phone? Or was it because they've just spent an hour laboriously constructing a cunning web of deceit? Oh, I'm sorry. I didn't want to make you unnecessarily anxious. I'm sure they were just busy. Don't worry.
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