A recent study scrutinized the effects of providing people with information about suspended sentences on their opinions of these sentences, and concluded that the impact is modest or even absent. Re-analyzing the original data, we demonstrate that this conclusion greatly underestimates the relevance of informational provision. Recognizing that information is framed differently by people with different cultural predispositions, we show that the effects of informational provision are much stronger among groups with specific penal attitudes than analyses of mere “direct” effects suggest. Even more importantly, the direction of these effects also depends on people’s penal attitudes; among specific groups, more information leads to less, instead of more, favorable opinions on suspended sentences.
De Koster, W., Achterberg, P. H. J., & Ivanova, K. O. (2016). Reconsidering the impact of informational provision on opinions of suspended sentences in the Netherlands: The importance of cultural frames. Crime and Delinquency, 62(11), 1528-1539. https://doi.org/10.1177/0011128714551405