New research points to three different ways we deceive others.
Most people are aware of first two categories of lies; deception and withholding. Deception, involves intentionally giving false information, and withholding, involves intentionally failing to disclose information. But have you ever heard about “paltering?”
Other than being a great SAT word, paltering involves misleading by telling the truth. Often, a palterer uses truth in an overly-specific and legalistic way. For instance, imagine a philandering husband who had a one-night stand with a woman on a business trip saying to his wife, “I’m not in a relationship with anyone but you, darling.” In his mind, he is telling the truth, because he had a one-and-done fling. He didn’t have, and doesn’t want, a relationship. Just sex. Or, think of the presidential candidate who says, “I won’t raise taxes” because it is technically congress’ job to pass new taxes. He might want new taxes. He might even advocate for them. But he won’t raise them, himself, because that would be outside of his authority as president. Paltering, as you might imagine, is a particularly insidious form of lying.
A new study looked at how palterers and those who experience paltering view this attempt at what Stephen Colbert referred to as “truthiness.” According to PsychCentral…
In the experiments, the researchers discovered that people preferred paltering to lying by commission, but the results of being found out can be just as harsh.
While palterers tended to think of their actions as more ethical because they essentially told the truth, when the deception was revealed, they were graded as harshly by their counterparts as if they had lied by commission, according to the study’s findings.
“When individuals discover that a prospective negotiation partner has paltered to them in the past, they are less likely to trust that partner and, therefore, less likely to negotiate with that person again,” said Rogers. “Taken together, our studies identify paltering as a distinct and frequently employed form of deception.” READ MORE
If you’re tired of being hurt by the dishonest people in your life, check out God Help Me, These People Are Driving Me Nuts! to discover how you can set appropriate boundaries and protect your heart.