- If time flies, are you more fun? The relative effect of expected exposure duration on the evaluation of social stimuli
- European Journal of Social Psychology
- Volume | Issue number
- 42 | 3
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences (FMG)
- Psychology Research Institute (PsyRes)
Two studies investigated how expectancy violations of exposure duration affected preference for neutral faces. In two experiments, participants evaluated pictures of neutral faces, ostensibly exposed for the duration of 8 (Experiment 1) or 10 (Experiment 2) seconds each. Exposure duration was manipulated by varying actual exposure time within participants as being either 2 seconds shorter (time "flies") or 2 seconds longer (time "drags") than expected. Results confirmed the intuitive hypothesis that neutral faces would be evaluated more positively in situations where time seemed to "fly" compared with situations where time seemed to "drag". However, comparing affective judgments in both expectancy violation conditions to an expectancy control (i.e., no expectancy violation) condition (Experiment 2) indicated that violations of expected exposure duration actually attenuated affective judgments, such that affective judgments in the absence of temporal discrepancies were most positive. These results suggest that temporal contrasts derived from a violation of duration expectancies may hinder fluent information processing, leading to attenuated affective judgments compared with situations in which no duration expectancies were violated.
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