Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Cheating and Creativity

      Do you consider yourself creative? If you do, then studies show that you might be more likely to cheat than others. This study started out as finding out who cheats and who doesn’t. When given an opportunity to cheat, fifty percent of the people did. Though a very small number of people cheated a lot, the rest were still cheating. Dan Ariely, the man who conducted the experiment has a hypothesis to why we cheat. He thinks that we cheat because we know that if we do better, we will be treated better than someone who did a bad job, but we also don’t want to hurt our reputation. So, we cheat a little, so we can do a good job without being seen as a cheater not only by others, but most importantly, by ourselves. This is where Airely got the idea that creative people would cheat more. 
     He said, “It's all about telling stories, so creative people are likely to be able to tell themselves better stories, which would allow them to cheat more on the one hand, but not feel worse about it on the other." This doesn’t apply to just cheating, it can apply to any immoral action. Say someone wants to slip a piece of candy from a store. They might make up a story like, “ Well, it is just a tiny piece of candy, and anyway, who would care if a kid like stole a teeny tiny piece of chocolate?” This is how our brains work, so if you are more creative, you can make a more rational story, which could convince you to cheat, lie, or steal even more.
      Now I’m not calling every creative person a cheater, I’m just saying that creativity could be a cause of cheating.

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