De Gustibus Non Est Disputandum? the Impact of the Nature of the Chosen Option in Positive and Negative Contexts

Thomas Kramer, Baruch College, City University of New York, USA
Michal Maimaran, Stanford University, USA
Itamar Simonson, Stanford University, USA
Although individual tastes reign supreme, consumers often criticize others’ choices or seek to defend their own. We propose that the negative (vs. positive) context in which these behaviors occur differentially affect the importance of the nature of the chosen option. In particular, since there is no arguing about taste, choice criticism is norm- (vs. attribute-) based. However, choice defense shifts the focus from norms to the option’s specific attributes. A series of studies demonstrates a large impact of the chosen option’s nature when forming criticism, whereas the ability to respond to criticism is rather insensitive to the option one chooses.
[ to cite ]:
Thomas Kramer, Michal Maimaran, and Itamar Simonson (2007) ,"De Gustibus Non Est Disputandum? the Impact of the Nature of the Chosen Option in Positive and Negative Contexts", in NA - Advances in Consumer Research Volume 34, eds. Gavan Fitzsimons and Vicki Morwitz, Duluth, MN : Association for Consumer Research, Pages: 534-535.