Unresponsive Bystander Effect Essay

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Research on the unresponsive bystander effect has lead to many studies that has shown that when people witness situations that are dangerous or compromising the witnesses are less likely to help the individual in need. This phenomenon is referred to as the bystander effect. Oxford reference defines the bystander effect as " the reluctance of bystanders to intervene in an emergency, especially when a person appears to be in distress." An example of this was Darley & Latane's 1968 experiment where they put a man in a room that had epileptic seizures. He was in with a group of two, three and six and as the groups got larger less people responded. They called this phenomenon diffusion of responsibility and it seems to be something…show more content…
Based off of the bystander effect Latane and Darley (1970) came up with a five-step psychological model that explained the thought process of bystanders. For a bystander to intervene they need to notice the situation, acknowledge that the situation is an emergency, feel that they have a personal responsibility to step in and help, believe that they can successfully help in the situation, and decide to take action and help. Along with these steps three thought processes were thought to be the reason for interference with the decision to intervene. Diffusion of responsibility, the more bystanders there are witnessing an event the more likely a bystander is to assume that someone else will help and they feel the responsibility will be assumed by someone else. Evaluation apprehension is the second thought process, it is a fear of being judged by others publicly which keeps people from stepping in and helping. The last thought process is pluralistic ignorance, essentially meaning all of the bystanders do not notice or ignore that the situation is an emergency and no one steps in to

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