An Explanation Of The Social Phenomena Known As The 'Bystander Effect'

An Explanation Of The Social Phenomena Known As The 'Bystander Effect'

"911, what's your emergency?"
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In a world where technology thrives, we can clearly see a significant shift in the way people interact and respond to one another. The virtual world has caused a vast amount of isolation, which arguably has resulted in a diffusion of responsibility to help our fellow members of society.

In an incessantly moving environment such as an urban city, there seems to be two groups located on opposite sides of the spectrum in terms of reacting to a social emergency; the “It’s not my problem” group, and the “How can you not step in?” group.

When asked, the majority would state that if someone were in danger they would be proactive and call for help, or personally step in. However, some people believe it is not his/her responsibility to possibly put themselves in danger by helping someone, therefore they mind his/her own business.

Expectedly, individuals report greater feelings of comfort and safety when in a crowd as opposed to being alone, due to the hope that if an emergency arises someone could witness and be of help. But in today’s society, this scarily is not always the case.

The Kitty Genovese murder of 1964 in New York City, of which sparked the social phenomena known as the ‘Bystander Effect’ proves this. Allegedly, there were several witnesses of the brutal stabbing and raping of Ms. Genovese of which did not act at all, or acted when it was already too late. The shock of these facts initiated social psychologists’ research in studying why and how people can be so dehumanized towards one another.

They began asking questions such as: Are our responses to someone in need innate? Does our social environment condition us to solely think of ourselves?

Interestingly, people are more likely to help someone/s if they are alone. According to Psychology Today, the bystander effect “occurs when the presence of others hinders an individual from intervening in an emergency situation.” Researchers have concluded three main reasons for this: Thinking that someone else already has or will take responsibility, social referencing, meaning people shape their actions to those around them, and lastly the natural shyness of not wanting to stand out in a crowd.

Although studies have been done with children, it still remains unclear of when this diffusion of responsibility kicks in and if it is biologically predetermined, or socially constructed.

My questions are: Has it gotten worse due to the heartless persona social media encourages us to have? Have we been so desensitized to trauma due to constant media coverage and animated violence?

It is extremely unsettling to think that if I were to be in a dangerous situation, that people around me would turn a blind eye. I fear that as society loses more of it's remaining solidarity, we will completely turn on each other, making us that much easier to control. If we do not help each other, who will?

Cover Image Credit: urbeurblog

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8 Reasons Why My Dad Is the Most Important Man In My Life

Forever my number one guy.
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Growing up, there's been one consistent man I can always count on, my father. In any aspect of my life, my dad has always been there, showing me unconditional love and respect every day. No matter what, I know that my dad will always be the most important man in my life for many reasons.

1. He has always been there.

Literally. From the day I was born until today, I have never not been able to count on my dad to be there for me, uplift me and be the best dad he can be.

2. He learned to adapt and suffer through girly trends to make me happy.

I'm sure when my dad was younger and pictured his future, he didn't think about the Barbie pretend pageants, dressing up as a princess, perfecting my pigtails and enduring other countless girly events. My dad never turned me down when I wanted to play a game, no matter what and was always willing to help me pick out cute outfits and do my hair before preschool.

3. He sends the cutest texts.

Random text messages since I have gotten my own cell phone have always come my way from my dad. Those randoms "I love you so much" and "I am so proud of you" never fail to make me smile, and I can always count on my dad for an adorable text message when I'm feeling down.

4. He taught me how to be brave.

When I needed to learn how to swim, he threw me in the pool. When I needed to learn how to ride a bike, he went alongside me and made sure I didn't fall too badly. When I needed to learn how to drive, he was there next to me, making sure I didn't crash.

5. He encourages me to best the best I can be.

My dad sees the best in me, no matter how much I fail. He's always there to support me and turn my failures into successes. He can sit on the phone with me for hours, talking future career stuff and listening to me lay out my future plans and goals. He wants the absolute best for me, and no is never an option, he is always willing to do whatever it takes to get me where I need to be.

6. He gets sentimental way too often, but it's cute.

Whether you're sitting down at the kitchen table, reminiscing about your childhood, or that one song comes on that your dad insists you will dance to together on your wedding day, your dad's emotions often come out in the cutest possible way, forever reminding you how loved you are.


7. He supports you, emotionally and financially.

Need to vent about a guy in your life that isn't treating you well? My dad is there. Need some extra cash to help fund spring break? He's there for that, too.

8. He shows me how I should be treated.

Yes, my dad treats me like a princess, and I don't expect every guy I meet to wait on me hand and foot, but I do expect respect, and that's exactly what my dad showed I deserve. From the way he loves, admires, and respects me, he shows me that there are guys out there who will one day come along and treat me like that. My dad always advises me to not put up with less than I deserve and assures me that the right guy will come along one day.

For these reasons and more, my dad will forever be my No. 1 man. I love you!

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14 Honest College Things The Class Of 2023 Needs To Know ~Before~ Fall Semester

Sit down, be humble.

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To The Class of 2023,

Before you start your college career, please know:

1. Nobody...and I mean nobody gives a shit about your AP Calculus scores.

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" I got a 5 in Calc AB AND BC, a 5 in AP Literature, awh but I only got a 4 in AP Chem"

2. THE SAME GOES FOR YOUR SAT/ACT SCORES + nobody will know what you're talking about because they changed the test like 10 times since.

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3. College 8 AMs are not the same as your 0 period orchestra class in 12th grade.

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4. You're going to get rejected from a lot of clubs and that does not make you a failure.

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5. If you do get into your clubs, make sure not to overwhelm or overcommit yourself.

visual representation of what it looks like when you join too many clubs

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6. It's OK to realize that you don't want to be pre-med or you want to change majors.

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7. There will ALWAYS ALWAYS be someone who's doing better than you at something but that doesn't mean you're behind.

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8. "I'm a freshman but sophomore standin-" No, you don't have to clarify that, you'll sound like an asshole.

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9. You may get your first ever B-, C+ or even D OR EVEN A W in your life. College is meant to teach you how to cope with failure.

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10. Go beyond your comfort zone. Join a theatre club if you're afraid of public speaking. Join an animal rescue club if you're afraid of animals. College is learning more about yourself.

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11. Scholarships do exist. APPLY APPLY APPLY.

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12. Don't try to brag about all the stuff you did in high school, you'll just sound like a weenie hut jr. scout

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13. Understand and be sensitive to the fact that everybody around you has a different experience and story of getting to university.

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14. You're going to be exposed to people with different opinions and views, don't fight them. Instead, try to explain your perspective and listen to their reasoning as well.

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