Alves, Hans, Koch, Alex and Unkelbach, Christian (2019). The differential similarity of positive and negative information - an affect-induced processing outcome? Cogn. Emot., 33 (6). S. 1224 - 1239. ABINGDON: ROUTLEDGE JOURNALS, TAYLOR & FRANCIS LTD. ISSN 1464-0600

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Abstract

People judge positive information to be more alike than negative information. This good-bad asymmetry in similarity was argued to constitute a true property of the information ecology (Alves, H., Koch, A., & Unkelbach, C. (2017). Why good is more alike than bad: Processing implications. Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 21, 69-79). Alternatively, the asymmetry may constitute a processing outcome itself, namely an influence of phasic affect on information processing. Because no research has yet tested whether phasic affect influences perceived similarity among stimuli, we conducted 5 Experiments that also tested whether phasic affect can account for the higher judged similarity among positive compared to negative stimuli. In three experiments, we affectively charged pictures of different Pokemon by pairing them with monetary gains and losses (Exp. 1a, 1b) as well as positive and negative trait words (Exp. 2); yet, the evaluative charge did not differentially influence perceived similarity among the Pokemon. Experiment 3 replicated the basic similarity asymmetry among positive and negative words, and found that it was unaffected by externally induced phasic affect. Experiment 4 showed that phasic affect had no influence on perceived similarity of non-evaluative words either. We conclude that albeit a weak influence of phasic affect on perceived similarity of stimuli cannot be ruled out entirely, it can most likely not account for the typically medium to large sized asymmetry in similarity among positive and negative stimuli.

Item Type: Journal Article
Creators:
CreatorsEmailORCIDORCID Put Code
Alves, HansUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Koch, AlexUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Unkelbach, ChristianUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
URN: urn:nbn:de:hbz:38-144166
DOI: 10.1080/02699931.2018.1549022
Journal or Publication Title: Cogn. Emot.
Volume: 33
Number: 6
Page Range: S. 1224 - 1239
Date: 2019
Publisher: ROUTLEDGE JOURNALS, TAYLOR & FRANCIS LTD
Place of Publication: ABINGDON
ISSN: 1464-0600
Language: English
Faculty: Unspecified
Divisions: Unspecified
Subjects: no entry
Uncontrolled Keywords:
KeywordsLanguage
PHASIC AFFECTIVE MODULATION; ATTENTION-GRABBING POWER; AUTOMATIC VIGILANCE; SELF-ENHANCEMENT; BIG 2; VALENCE; RECOGNITION; DENSITY; AGENCY; FACESMultiple languages
Psychology, ExperimentalMultiple languages
Refereed: Yes
URI: http://kups.ub.uni-koeln.de/id/eprint/14416

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