How To Spot A Liar

Discussion in 'THREAD ARCHIVES' started by Seiji, Apr 23, 2014.

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  1. [​IMG]
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  2. Actually, at least concerning eye contact, a feedback loop has occurred. It is common knowledge among most people that Liars don't like to make eye contact, so Liar's over compensate and make too much eye contact. So really, if someone is creeping you out because they don't seem to look away, that's more indicative of a liar.
  3. Sorry to burst the bubble, but the infographic is, in fact, not backed up by science. :c
    Most people think they're good at spotting liars and that they are good liars themselves. These two things obviously cannot coexist. In fact, lying can vary considerably and liars themselves often take notes from infographics like these to change their behaviors. There's no scientific evidence to back up lying: even agents who have been trained at immense expense (the TSA alone spent a billion dollars last year) have a 99% failure rate for spotting suspicious activity. The average person is only 47% accurate at spotting a liar... when they have 50/50 odds.
    There's a lot of psychological phenomena involved in this, most of which is way over my head, but the long story short is that even well-trained professionals only got an 80% correct rating and that was in a non-peer reviewed study that only had one test group. As much as I wish spotting liars was hard science, it simply isn't. It's a guessing game. <-- this extrapolates on the numbers I gave <-- this notes that there are a few things that liars do differently; body language is not chief among them and all of the differences are as compared to their truthtelling results; in other words a stranger would never know.

    Really cool post! Just remember that catching liars is a guessing game, not science. ^^
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  4. Lying is totally a science. More a social science than anything, maybe. Lying is a skill that human beings use everyday to create perfect versions of themselves, or to cover their asses in times of crisis. We need science to disarm them of their lies. And if I learned anything from the movie called The Invention of Lying, it's that our society is not polite enough to not-have lies. I bet there's some sort of brain science that can be explained too, having to do with lying. I'm too tired to put anymore thought into this. >:[

    That's just my opinion, though. >>; I personally thought this graphic was informative and interesting. Collecting that kind of data must take a ton of research in and out of the field. Or maybe it doesn't. Either way, it's well done.
    #4 Fluffy, Apr 23, 2014
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2014

  5. I think I get what you're trying to say here (lying takes a lot of skill, has been extensively studied, and has some quantifiable/qualifiable stats- right? Or am I totally off-base here? XD) but it's statements like these that make it harder for some people to understand the difference between "science" and science.
    While there are some hard-science aspects to lying (MRIs can detect lying, for example) being able to detect a liar is not science. It's been shown time and time again that it's mostly guesses, with no higher probability rating than pure chance.

    Think of it this way: meteorology is a true, hard science. It uses complicated machines that read complex patterns and extrapolate a series of events based on prior data. It is still not 100% accurate. A guy standing in his backyard looking at clouds can also guess at the outcome. To make it simple, let's say the forecast is either "Rainy" or "not rainy". The machines can look at the broad weather patterns, compare the data to previous records on file, and measure a dozen variables. The dude can only see what is in his field of vision and has no access to the data behind it. He is not a meteorologist. His forecast is guesswork.
    Some people are uncannily good at spotting liars or predicting weather, but that doesn't mean that what they're doing is science. Science require results to be duplicated numerous times by numerous people in controlled environments manipulating only specific variables to show a change. Although the infographic has some pretty cool stuff, laboratory settings have failed to recognize any of them as foolproof (or even high-probability) signs of lying.

    tl;dr nerds like me get butthurt over the word science being slightly misused. It's honestly not a big deal but I feel like the difference ought to be presented. ^^
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  6. @Lady Sabine
    Yes, thank you, science =/= assumptions
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  7. We shouldn't use this list as a 100% accurate guide. I omit contractions and add words to be more ocnvincing when I'm telling the truth to someone who might not believe me, or if there's bad consequences if someone doesn't believe me. i.e.: If my boss asks me why I was late I'll avoid contractions and slang so that I don't sound casual/like I'm blowing it off, and tell her the truth (that I didn't get out of bed in time) but I'll probably also add that my alarm hasn't been going off every time and I had to wake my boyfriend up to move his truck).

    Similarly, nervous habits are indicative of lying, but not exclusive to it. Someone might simply be nervous about something else or distracted! I could go on.

  8. Precisely! Everyone lies (and tells the truth) differently. If you know a person well and know the difference between their lying and truthtelling mannerisms, then some of the signs will be 100% accurate.
    However, another person might use just the reverse. This is especially true with different cultures! Even in muted videos where only body language and not words are used to tell lies, people from different parts of the world act very differently. For example, in the Western world women are expected to mostly maintain eye contact with people. In the Middle East, however, prolonged eye contact is masculine, challenging, and rude for a woman. So if an American girl can't look you in the eye, that might be a sign of lying. But a Egyptian girl might just be being polite! Same with contractions, how much ya say, and how ya say it. Some cultures have 'em everywhere. Other cultures consider it to be quite unforgivably rude and would very much appreciate the use of every kindness and formality when engaged in a proper conversation with a person of equal or greater authority.
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  9. I think what the infographic is trying to say is that these are all signs of potential lying, particularly when two or more of these things are being displayed by the person you are trying to gauge.

    It's not that we use any of these techniques to tell whether or not a person is lying on a day to day basis. For example: "Did you get the recipe from grandma?" "Um... Yes!" You're not going to use this comprehensive list to gauge their eye-movements, the wrinkles on their face, their means of speaking, lack (or extensive use) of contractions, whether or not their answer was too clipped... No one in their right mind is going to use that for something so trivial.

    However, there is a very valid reason these techniques are taught to interrogators and law enforcement: they work. The articles you posted, @Lady Sabine, assert that they do not. However, the articles themselves relent and say that there have been experiments utilizing these techniques that show they do in fact work, and to a very high degree. What I'm trying to say is that, when you use these techniques in conjunction with whatever other techniques interrogators use, you can gauge whether or not a person is lying.

    Example: "Where were you the night Asmo killed Diana?!"

    If the suspect is looking up and away, using contractions then not using them, has an overly-elaborate story of where they were, is sweating profusely, gets loud before getting quiet again... you bet your ass they're lying about something.

    At least, that's what I took from the neat little image I posted earlier.
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  10. ...Where the fuck do I go to get paid for illustratin' infographics. Fuck.
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  11. You're assuming whoever made that got paid for it.

    Also, Advertising, yo! Grab the customer's attention with a worrying or fascinating fact, and then continue on to the info about how the product or service relates to that :3

  12. The infographic is pretty cool, but note the sources. Newsweek? The truth about why women lie? Not the world's greatest sources. And not a single peer-reviewed study!

    And, no offense, but the TSA has a one percent success rate. That does not sound like working to me, especially considering they spent a billion dollars in the name of anti-terrorism and haven't caught a single terrorist.

    The article, also, does not relent. It notes that there is a single contradicting study, but that the study has not been repeated by anyone ever, was not conducted scientifically, and was only performed one time. That's a polite, scientific way of saying "we recognize the other side's findings and propose they are bs".
    Providing the study does wind up being accepted: 80 percent is a HORRIBLE success rate for law enforcement. You can't put someone in jail for 80%! You can't even get probable cause in most states (legal jargon: probable cause means the actions an officer sees are so likely to be connected to a crime that he has the right to investigate without consulting a judge). Let's take your Iwaku example: if it's 80% correct and you interviewed 100 people, of whom twenty knew something, then....
    64 people knew nothing and it looked like they knew nothing.
    16 people knew nothing but it looked like they knew something
    16 people knew something and it looked like they knew something
    4 people knew something but it looked like they knew nothing

    That's letting 4% of the criminals get away! Furthermore, that means 16% of people are getting falsely interrogated; the same number that are being rightfully interrogated! Talk about an abuse of authority. Telling the real liars from the looks-like-they're-lying crowd is literally a coin toss. 50/50. If I got arrested based on a cop being 80% sure I was lying to him, you can bet your ass there would be a lawsuit.

    tl;dr you cannot gauge whether or not a person is lying, only make a slightly educated guess
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  13. @Kooriryu you don't go anywhere friend….

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  14. Fuck, they better have gotten paid for that shit. Motherfuckers way too quick on that "We can pay you... in experience!" bullshit ride. Lemme do a PSA for all the Iwaku artists tho, it's both tangential AND relevant to the thread:


    ^^^ This for those kids tryin' to start out in freelance artwork. P.p.s. Pricing your shit at 5-10 bucks for full body, color and inked work is hella badwrong. Stop doing it, five dollars should get an asshole a nicely shaded in circle not their entire fuckin' character leaping majestically through the air. Stop that shit. Stop. ssssstaaaahp

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  15. I would look at this information as incomplete. There may not be evidence of being able to tell if a person is lying on a global scale, that Shouldn't exclude locally or even regionally. And how many of these studies included people under the stress of real world lying? If none, then how did they compensate for that? I couldn't find an answer in your links. Also, what type of lies are we discussing? If we are speaking generally then I would agree with you, but only in the widest spectrum.

    While I can agree with you on some points the evidence isn't presented as a whole. And you also seem to be riding extremely hard on the idea that this article and the paper you linked are infallible. Any nerd will tell you being so closed minded is bad.
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  16. If only Everyone was taught such things.
  17. (I'm assuming you're talking to me. If you meant it for someone else, sorry)

    For that matter, all human information is incomplete. However, there are predictable things and unpredictable ones, in which lying seems to fit into the latter category pretty firmly.
    It's difficult to measure "real world impact" because of the variables associated with it. If everyone is lying about different things, how do we know the behavioral differences aren't caused by their reactions to work/SOs/dieting/religion/politics/etc.? The study would need to find a diverse group of people, including as many racial, ethnic, and cultural backgrounds as possible, and have them all tell nearly the same real world lie. It would be an awesome experiment, but insanely difficult and expensive to actually do.
    As for excluding locally and regionally, theory =/= peer reviewed studies. Has a study been done on determining how lies vary from place to place?

    Now, concerning your ad hominem...
    I wouldn't identify myself as closed-minded nor "bad", nor have I stated that any information is infallible. Instead of quoting an infographic or personal experience, I am getting my info from the most scientifically sound pieces of evidence presented on this board at the moment. You're making a pretty weak argument without presenting a logical alternative or any sources. Do you have any ideas for how I should better make my argument?
  18. Most of this is essentially what I am pointing out in the first place. You're saying such a study doesn't exist yet, correct? Then you've proven yourself wrong or at least not entirely true. And excluding local and regional information would make an incomplete picture. Finally, I am not aware of a study. It was critical thinking that lead to that question.

    True, you didn't state the information was infallible. Nor did I say you stated it, only that you present it in such a way as to suggest it. Like now. And my argument isn't based on sources, again, it is critical thinking that lead to my line of questions. I provided no alternative because that wasn't my goal, it was to ask questions that I felt weren't being taken into consideration.

    I think the fact that you look at this as an argument and not a discussion is something to note. Additionally, it's bad to use information to suit your needs as opposed to presenting it neutrally.
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  20. I think the info graph is a great tool to use for little flavor bits in roleplaying and writing. O__O
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