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Introduction to Social Influence, Persuasion, Compliance & Propaganda

This portion of the Working Psychology website offers a brief introduction to a big topic: social influence, the modern, scientific study of persuasion, compliance, propaganda, "brainwashing," and the ethics that surround these issues. Although these topics aren't always simple (it is, after all, science), I've done my best to make this introduction interesting. Since Aristotle recorded his principles of persuasion in Rhetoric, humans have attempted to define and refine the principles of successful influence. Persuasion has been studied as an art for most of human history. The comparatively young science of social influence, however, can trace its roots to the second world war, when a social psychologist named Carl Hovland was contracted by the U.S. Armed Forces to bolster the morale of soldiers. Social scientists attempt to support any assertion with facts. Want a few examples of how social influence works in the real world before you continue? Copyright © 2002 by Kelton Rhoads, Ph.D.

http://www.workingpsychology.com/intro.html

Judge in Google/Oracle Lawsuit: ‘You’re Both Asking for the Moon’ Wanted: More judges like U.S. District Judge William Alsup. Alsup is presiding over the currently ongoing lawsuit between Google and Oracle over the former’s Android OS—which the latter says infringes on their Java patents—and is demonstrating a refreshing attitude towards both companies’ attempts to argue their case. Alsup told attorneys representing the corporations, “You’re both asking for the moon and you should be more reasonable” during a hearing yesterday, according to Reuters. Lawyers acting on behalf of Google argued that Oracle estimated damages of between $1.4 billion and $6.1 billion as a result of patent infringement within the Android OS and asked Alsup to disallow those estimates, saying instead that Oracle deserves no damages. (MORE: Will App Developers Be Scared Away by Lawsuit Threats?)

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The Price Paid for Being the Perfect Child inShare1 Being considered a “perfect child” by one’s parents feels fantastic. Basking in the glow from parents’ approval and love can feel safe and special, like one is living in a magical world where everyone is happy and satisfied. These feelings are very seductive. The child is usually not aware that they pay a price in order to maintain the parents’ continued extraordinary approval.

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Sentient Developments: Ranking the most powerful forces in the Universe There are a large number of forces at work in the Universe, some more powerful than others -- and I'm not talking about the four fundamental forces of nature. A force in the context I'm talking about is any phenomenon in Universe that exhibits a powerful effect or influence on its environment. Many of these phenomenon quite obviously depend on the four basic forces to function (gravity, electromagnetism, the weak interaction and the strong interaction), but it's the collective and emergent effects of these fundamental forces that I'm interested in. And when I say power I don't just mean the capacity to destroy or wreak havoc, though that's an important criteria. A force should also be considered powerful if it can profoundly reorganize or manipulate its environment in a coherent or constructive way.

How To Not Get Sued for File Sharing (And Other Ideas To Avoid Being Treated Like a Criminal) As of July 2006, the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) has sued over 20,000 music fans for file sharingin just under three years. In 2004, the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) joined this misguided, anti-consumer crusade. Filing lawsuits against anonymous "Doe" defendants, the RIAA and MPAA seek to uncover the identities of P2P users and force them to pay thousands of dollars in settlements. Pixel Poppers: Doing My Dailies: Why I Quit WoW And Started Working Out I quit World of Warcraft in June of 2009. I quit hard. I donated my assets to the guild bank and deleted all of my characters.

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