We are more likely to be receptive to good news than bad, and a team at UCL has gone some way to explaining why we prefer to look on the bright side
Most of us go through life with a selective ear for the news we take in. We hear the good more than the bad, the flattering more than the insulting. And we update our beliefs in a way that reflects that bias.
The effect appears in many guises. We update our self image when told we are smarter or better-looking than we thought. But if we hear we are more stupid and uglier than we supposed, we revise that image rather less. In the general population, about 80% to 90% of us behave this way.
There are pros and cons to what neuroscientists call the "good news/bad news effect", though by the nature of the beast, you might dismiss the negatives. In building beliefs predominantly on good news, we lean towards an optimistic view of life. We are less anxious of the likelihoods of unpleasant events: cancer, burglary, internet fraud, missing a flight, divorce.
There is a cost to this rose-tinted view of the world though. To ignore bad news can be dangerous. It can make us overconfident, perhaps even reckless. It might leave us unprepared for a natural disaster, naive to the dangers of contracting disease, or oblivious to the warning signs of impending financial collapse.
In a series of experiments at University College London, a team of neuroscientists has gone some way to explaining how this preference for good news arises in the brain. Through disrupting the function of a small brain region, they neutralised the bias and left people as open to bad news as they were to good. READ MORE HERE>>
(TLS-) It seems that people just want to feel good and wander through their lives. This article proves to me we're not done evolving yet as this is a major design flaw in my eyes and our greatest challenge. Most people are not interested in the truth because it's usually bad news and scary, sorry 9-11 was an inside, outside, Mossad, Saudi, ISI job! Fighting nature is tough but can be done.