The demonstration effect

Or is it herd behavior?:

Since the video of former NFL player Ray Rice knocking his then-fiancée out in an elevator leaked, the National Domestic Violence Hotline has seen an 84% increase in call volume.

There is more here, from Kottke.


Many of these calls may also be the result of "strategic behavior":

Headline could also have read:

Why do men stay with abusive partners?

Domestic abuse is very much a two-way street.

+1 … but people need a villain to justify their (our) hypocrisy and show how morally superior we are

Completely agree. As a 210 pound male who used to train power lifting and now practices Brazilian jiu-jitsu, I am constantly in fear of my 150 pound yoga doing nurse girlfriend.

Oh wait.

So women are not physically equal to men, you hateful misogynist?

He doesn't just hate women. It's anyone who does yoga or is in the medical profession, too. They are all spineless wusses in his mind.

Try evolving some time. Seriously.

If it were herd behavior, people would be looking at each other to see who called the violence center.

I think it is rather HEARD behavior....that people heard of this, and, without knowing what others did, decided on their own to call the hotline for help to deal with their own problems, or to contribute to the organization.

Herd v. Heard.

There is a difference.

The twitter memes #whyIstayed and #whyIleft might have helped. I expect that many victims focus inward and forget that there are wide and established patterns.

Focusing inward or seeing that others have experienced domestic violence is not herd behavior. If the discussion was: I called domestic violence hotline would be close, but I still don't think it is herd behavior. Telling someone that there are resources available to help, and with that information, people call is not herd behavior as well.

Loose terms slink sips.

Definition of herd behavior from the Behavioral Economics Guide of 2014 (Samson, editor):

Herd Behavior: "This effect is evident when people do what others are doing instead of using their own information or making independent decisions,"

Defined that narrowly, Herd Behavior becomes limited to unconscious choices. Perhaps those are the BE terms, but it leaves a lot of gray scale herd behavior on the table.

As an example of something "mixed," market herds move in and out of trendy stocks, in and out of municipal bonds. Those are herd behaviors, definitely, while not meeting "instead of" criteria. If anything, people have a hard time distinguishing how much they are making an independent decision.

And yet Palmer still married Rice... revealed preferences for the win.

In for a penny, in for a pound. Both puns intended.

The articles in the link actually directly contradict your assumption that someone marrying/staying with their abuser reveals preferences, except in the sense that the abuser has manipulated the situation so that it seems like the only choice.

Maybe sometimes it is just the power of information.

How about the huge drop in children illegal immigrants at the border the last two months? At this point, nobody knows why this is true or if the trend continues but I do believe that most parents in these Latin America know the reality of spending $8,000 to send their children to detained in US facilities does not appealing.

How the huge drop in teenage pregancy? Could MTV 16 & Pregrant given young teenagers the simple realities of being a young mom helped lower the age.

The big drop in smoking too. Both herd behavior (it's cool to NOT smoke now) and more information (about how bad it is for you, something our grandparents and even parents had little idea about).

And at a certain tipping point smoke became really annoying to non-smokers.

Yes, there seem to be a growing number of Nosmo King's these days which goes to show that it's cool.

Any of them related?

It is a little odd that we are so generous to alternative sexualities these days, but we are giving this couple such a hard time. What if they just said it was consentual BDSM? Would we all have to respect it?

It comes a little close because she does not want to press charges. When do we say, hey, that's just what they are into and that is fine? If she doesn't care, why should anyone else?

This popular concept of domestic violence comes from the Victorian period where women were seen as passive and weak. Now they are tough enough to serve in the Marines. Do we seriously need to re-think the way we approach these incidents? I think we will in the end. Although probably not in this case given the guy is huge.

They are passive and weak, including in the Marines.

Men are built, by evolution, for fighting. Women are built, by evolution, as mothers. This doesnt mean that's all they can do, but they certainly have comparative advantages. The reason most of the prison pop is men is not merely discrimination in favor of women. In a sense, our laws were crafted over centuries with gender differences in mind.

This is insanely narrow-minded. Women are no more built exclusively as mothers than men are fathers. Women evolved in a highly competitive social arena, just like men, and compete socially as well, just not as men do. Women are more likely to tease and mock each other and have an entire suite of other social skills you probably don't have. And yes sometimes women are physically and verbally abusive towards their partners, because women did not just evolve to be mothers.

If we look back through the long line of women who have lived in the past, we can say several things about every single ancestor of every single woman alive. We can say they may not have been bitchy, we can say they may not have been very competitive socially, we can say they may not have teased or mocked each other. But we have to say that each and every one was a mother.

Women are built by evolution to be mothers. Every single woman alive today is descended from a long long line of mothers. That "exclusively" is you adding a term to make the claim even stronger than it was - that verges on dishonest.

But more importantly, nothing you have said contradicts that. There is no contradiction between teasing other women and being a mother. In fact they may be closely related if teasing is just a hidden way of competing for the best man.

Actually, Rice is average in size but very muscular. Wikipedia puts him at 5'8'', 206 lbs.

I don't think Ray Rice personally punched more than 60-70% of those people, though.

Domestic abuse, like rape, is simultaneously one of the most underreported and overreported crimes. They are the hardest cases for police, detectives, prosecutors, judges, and juries.

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