Congressman Christopher Lee may have been better off to have someone else read his apology based on what saw. This is very interesting to me since we conduct interrogations and interviews of suspects in civil and criminal cases.
The New York lawmaker was made to say sorry — and resign — on Wednesday after Gawker revealed the married politician posted a shirtless, flexing photo of himself on a Craiglist dating forum taken with a cell phone camera.
Canadian scientists have revealed that there are many ways to tell the difference between people who are sincerely remorseful and those who are just faking it — but you have to be able to watch them while they’re saying they’re sorry.
The researchers, led by Leanne ten Brinke of the University of British Columbia, rounded up 31 college students who were videotaped while making sincere or insincere apologies, according to a new study published in the journal Law and Human Behavior. The biggest telltale sign of “crocodile tears,” study author Leanne ten Brinke told the Star on Friday, is overdoing the emotion. “Wah Wah! I am so sad about that thing I did.”
The study volunteers were first asked to describe, while being videotaped, a non-criminal event that they felt intensely and genuinely remorseful about. They were then asked to describe an episode of cheating for which they felt no remorse, but to act as if they did. When researchers compared the two sets of recordings, they saw major differences between the people who were truly sorry and those who were just faking it.
People who aren’t really sorry tend to show a greater swing in mood — from sorry to happy, for example. People who are sincerely apologizing will go through a neutral mood before showing any signs of happiness.
The truly not remorseful also tend to speak with more hesitation. So, if you hear “um” a lot in between words, that’s not a good sign.
The point of the research was to help judges, juror and parole board members determine who is really sorry. The OJ Jury did not read this report but may do so any time now.
We’ll all have a chance to try out the new findings if ex-congressman Lee decides to make an apology in public.