We investigated the ability of a person to predict people's collective liking, namely, the average liking of others. Participants performed two tasks. In the likability rating task, they observed images of common object (e.g., car, chair) and rated visual likability of the object (1: very bad-7: very good). In the prediction task, each of 20 participants were shown the same objects and asked to predict the average likability rating of 20 other people. The prediction validity was measured as a correlation between prediction and the result of the actual likability rating. Each participant's prediction modestly correlated with the average likability rating; r=.32 on average. However, the correlation was not higher than the correlation of the participant's own likability rating with the average likability rating. We also found that the predictions were biased toward one's own liking; each participant's prediction correlated more with his or her own likability rating than the observed average likability rating. The results indicate that a person's knowledge of a collective liking is incorrect and is biased toward one's own liking.
The Japanese Journal of Psychonomic Science 31 (1), 77-78, 2012
The Japanese Psychonomic Society