When a group is lesser than the individual

12 07 2008

I read somewhere that in a group setting, human beings tend to feel absolved of responsibility to participate or provide assistance.

E.g. When a person screams for help in the middle of the night in a highly populated residential area, few or none of “the group” will call the police for help – their reasoning being, “Someone else will do it”. However, if an individual knows that he/she is the only person in the area that is able to provide assistance, chances are he/she will do something to help.

I was pretty skeptical of that article. I mean, it’s more to do with upbringing and culture, right? If I was brought up to help folks in need, or brought up in a culture which emphasizes community spirit, I surely would help no matter what.

As fate would have it, I had the chance to test this theory …

Venue: Elevator, Ely’s office, Hong Kong

Time: Lunch time rush hour

Record of events:

– I have to make a stop at the company mailroom, 6 floors down from my office. The lift lobby is crowded as it’s lunch hour.

– Lift arrives at my floor. Several other people enter the lift with me.

– I press the button for my floor and move towards the back of the lift. I notice that no one else looks at the lift panel or presses the button for the ground floor.

– The lift stops at almost every floor on the way down. Others enter the lift. Still, no one looks at the lift panel. No one notices that “ground floor” hasn’t been activated.

– I reach my floor and exit. The lift doesn’t move. Everyone stares blankly forward and waits for the lift to continue its descent. (Of course that doesn’t happen, you didn’t activate the ground floor button. DUHHH!)

– The lift stops and starts going up instead. A lift-load full of apathetic people now have to make the journey up, then down again. Their inaction has wasted them at least 5-10 minutes of their lunch time.

Perhaps the theory is true — in this country, at least 🙂

On a side note, I finally got a new phone:

Samsung Soul U908





3 responses

14 07 2008

How odd!
I guess they may be…gasp! Robots?

Samsung is getting really good design…

14 07 2008

How’s your battery consumption with this phone? John got it too, and he’s complaining its dying very fast. Does your phone light up every now and then by itself?

10 08 2008

My battery life ok leh.

Maybe John’s has 7th month syndrome 😛

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: