Motives For Deception in Consumer Word-Of-Mouth Communication

This research investigates an understudied facet of consumer word-of-mouth communication – the transmission of intentionally deceptive information from one consumer to another. Across 4 studies we examine whether contextual factors, including relevance of the communication recipient, significance of the lie, and the role of the consumer, can activate interpersonally-based motives and, in turn, influence lying behavior. Specifically, in contexts where a consumer’s self-image is threatened or the opportunity to gain material wealth is available consumers are more likely to tell self-focused lies. Conversely, when participants risk threatening a valued relationship they tell other-focused lies. The implications for these findings are discussed.


Jennifer Argo, Katherine White, and Darren Dahl (2005) ,"Motives For Deception in Consumer Word-Of-Mouth Communication", in E - European Advances in Consumer Research Volume 7, eds. Karin M. Ekstrom and Helene Brembeck, Goteborg, Sweden : Association for Consumer Research, Pages: 221-222.


Jennifer Argo, University of Alberta
Katherine White, University of Calgary
Darren Dahl, University of British Columbia


E - European Advances in Consumer Research Volume 7 | 2005

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