It’s your choice! – Or is it really?

Final Remarks

The psychological literature on choice blindness shows that it is a robust phenomenon that persists across different modalities and different types of decisions. So yes, in retrospect, we cannot always determine what our original choice was. Under certain circumstances, our decisions may be sensitive to the manipulations of clever marketers, careless doctors, and ruthless police officers. However, choice blindness does not imply that human decisions are always sensitive to corruptive influences. We would likely notice if the person we are out on a date with was swapped, or if the color of the new car we just bought was different from the one we ordered. Instead, the current findings point to more ambiguous situations in which discrepancies between the choices made and the observed outcome may indeed go unnoticed. Nevertheless, in those situations, choice blindness can have serious implications for medical and judicial outcomes. Future research is needed to determine how, in those situations, choice blindness can be avoided.

From a scientific point of view, choice blindness is a fascinating phenomenon that has stimulated new research on the limits of human perception and decision making (Hall et al., 2010; Moore & Haggard, 2006). Future research examining the underlying mechanisms of this effect promises to be a fascinating endeavour, and we anticipate that choice blindness will be a key aspect in future discussions regarding decision making processes and preference formation.


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