May 21, 2007
Maybe the Horse Isn't So Dead After All
Repeated exposure to one person’s viewpoint can have almost as much influence as exposure to shared opinions from multiple people. This finding shows that hearing an opinion multiple times increases the recipient’s sense of familiarity and in some cases gives a listener a false sense that an opinion is more widespread then it actually is.
Sounds totally plausible to me. There’s this line later on: “The repetition effect observed in this research can help us to understand how our own impressions are influenced by what we perceive to be the reality of others.”
I think about this phenomenon a lot in one particular context: It’s amazing how fame and notoriety are so (and so increasingly?) local and subjective. Like, I think William Langewiesche is totally famous; you probably do not. I think The Shins are totally famous; if you are the blog-reading type you might agree, but it is not that widely-held a belief.
I understand that the realization that things are awfully subjective is not, like, a new thing, but come on! This is supposed to be fame! The whole point is to actually be famous!