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Most People Are Honest About Being Liars

Update Date: Dec 13, 2013 02:47 PM EST
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Most people are honest, a new study suggests.

While it is generally assumed that most people tell little white lies, new research reveals that most people are truthful and honest about their lying.

Lead researchers Rony Halevy, Bruno Verschuere and and Shaul Shalvi survyed 527 people to find out how many times they lied over the past 24 hours.

Afterwards, participants were asked to take part in an additional lab test to see how honest they were about the frequency of their lying. For the test, participants rolled a dice and received a sum of money depending on the number they reported having rolled.

Participants were free to cheat by reporting higher numbers as researchers were unable to see the actual umbers rolled.

The findings revealed that participants who had admitted to lying more frequently also had higher winnings in this dice test. Researchers said that the finding mean that participants who said lie often were actually honest about their lying. Researchers explain that their scores were so implausible that they most likely lied about the numbers they rolled.

Past research suggests that on average people lie twice a day. However, the latest study does not permit the conclusion that everyone lies, according to researchers.

"The fact that participants who indicated lying often actually did lie more often in the dice test demonstrates that they were honest about their dishonesty," Verschuere said in a news release.

"It may be that frequent liars show more psychopathic traits and therefore have no trouble admitting to lying frequently," he added.

The findings are published in the journal Human Communication.

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