Sad people should be treated nicely: how mood influences politeness

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstractScientificpeer-review

Abstract

Emotions have a large impact on our behavior. For example, when in a positive mood, we talk more, we reveal more about ourselves and we see conflicts as caused by external sources and not as fundamental problems. But in a positive mood we are also less likely to take the perspective of another person and our language tends to be more ambiguous and thus harder to understand. There are many studies that investigate how mood affects our communication, but these studies generally only focus on the sender and not on the receiver. In this contribution, we investigate how the emotion of the receiver influences communication. Using Experimental Vignette Methodology, Participants (N=202) were asked to deliver a negative message ("you did not get the job") by email. Crucially, the negative news was delivered to a receiver that was described as either happy, sad, angry, or neutral. The results show that, indeed, the emotional state of the receiver affects the message of the sender. Concretely, we show that senders formulate a message that is more polite when the receiver is in a sad state, as compared to a happy or angry state. These findings extend earlier work on the role of emotion in interpersonal communication, as described in frameworks such as EASI (Emotions as Agents of Social Influence, Van Kleef, 2009, 2014) that try to account for the role of affect in interpersonal communication . In addition to these results we will also present a replication of the current study and ongoing work in which we study the effect in a more natural setting.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages1
Publication statusPublished - 2019
EventICSI 2019 Regional Conference: (Re-)Connecting Perspectives on Interpersonal Communication and Social Interaction - Tilburg Univesity, Tilburg, Netherlands
Duration: 14 Oct 201916 Oct 2019

Conference

ConferenceICSI 2019 Regional Conference
Abbreviated titleICSI / ECREA
CountryNetherlands
CityTilburg
Period14/10/1916/10/19

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Communication
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Keywords

  • Interpersonal communication
  • Emotion
  • Affect
  • Politeness

Cite this

Goudbeek, M., & Pollmann, M. (2019). Sad people should be treated nicely: how mood influences politeness. Abstract from ICSI 2019 Regional Conference, Tilburg, Netherlands.
Goudbeek, Martijn ; Pollmann, Monique. / Sad people should be treated nicely: how mood influences politeness. Abstract from ICSI 2019 Regional Conference, Tilburg, Netherlands.1 p.
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Goudbeek, M & Pollmann, M 2019, 'Sad people should be treated nicely: how mood influences politeness' ICSI 2019 Regional Conference, Tilburg, Netherlands, 14/10/19 - 16/10/19, .

Sad people should be treated nicely: how mood influences politeness. / Goudbeek, Martijn; Pollmann, Monique.

2019. Abstract from ICSI 2019 Regional Conference, Tilburg, Netherlands.

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstractScientificpeer-review

TY - CONF

T1 - Sad people should be treated nicely: how mood influences politeness

AU - Goudbeek, Martijn

AU - Pollmann, Monique

PY - 2019

Y1 - 2019

N2 - Emotions have a large impact on our behavior. For example, when in a positive mood, we talk more, we reveal more about ourselves and we see conflicts as caused by external sources and not as fundamental problems. But in a positive mood we are also less likely to take the perspective of another person and our language tends to be more ambiguous and thus harder to understand. There are many studies that investigate how mood affects our communication, but these studies generally only focus on the sender and not on the receiver. In this contribution, we investigate how the emotion of the receiver influences communication. Using Experimental Vignette Methodology, Participants (N=202) were asked to deliver a negative message ("you did not get the job") by email. Crucially, the negative news was delivered to a receiver that was described as either happy, sad, angry, or neutral. The results show that, indeed, the emotional state of the receiver affects the message of the sender. Concretely, we show that senders formulate a message that is more polite when the receiver is in a sad state, as compared to a happy or angry state. These findings extend earlier work on the role of emotion in interpersonal communication, as described in frameworks such as EASI (Emotions as Agents of Social Influence, Van Kleef, 2009, 2014) that try to account for the role of affect in interpersonal communication . In addition to these results we will also present a replication of the current study and ongoing work in which we study the effect in a more natural setting.

AB - Emotions have a large impact on our behavior. For example, when in a positive mood, we talk more, we reveal more about ourselves and we see conflicts as caused by external sources and not as fundamental problems. But in a positive mood we are also less likely to take the perspective of another person and our language tends to be more ambiguous and thus harder to understand. There are many studies that investigate how mood affects our communication, but these studies generally only focus on the sender and not on the receiver. In this contribution, we investigate how the emotion of the receiver influences communication. Using Experimental Vignette Methodology, Participants (N=202) were asked to deliver a negative message ("you did not get the job") by email. Crucially, the negative news was delivered to a receiver that was described as either happy, sad, angry, or neutral. The results show that, indeed, the emotional state of the receiver affects the message of the sender. Concretely, we show that senders formulate a message that is more polite when the receiver is in a sad state, as compared to a happy or angry state. These findings extend earlier work on the role of emotion in interpersonal communication, as described in frameworks such as EASI (Emotions as Agents of Social Influence, Van Kleef, 2009, 2014) that try to account for the role of affect in interpersonal communication . In addition to these results we will also present a replication of the current study and ongoing work in which we study the effect in a more natural setting.

KW - Interpersonal communication

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KW - Affect

KW - Politeness

M3 - Abstract

ER -

Goudbeek M, Pollmann M. Sad people should be treated nicely: how mood influences politeness. 2019. Abstract from ICSI 2019 Regional Conference, Tilburg, Netherlands.