Why Do People Lie?

By Truth About Deception

New cross-cultural research on the motivation underlying deception reveals that most lies are told for selfish motives. Over half of the motivations reported for engaging in deception involve advancing one’s interests at another’s expanse – such as covering up a betrayal or achieving an economic or non-economic advantage.

While people often like to think they lie to protect other’s feelings, deception is also clearly used to promote our own interests.

Source: Levine, T. R., Ali, M. V., Dean, M., Abdulla, R. A., & Garcia-Ruano, K. (2016). Toward a Pan-cultural Typology of Deception Motives. Journal of Intercultural Communication Research, 45(1), 1-12.


What Motivates a Partner to Confess?

By Truth About Deception

Lovers lie and sometimes they confess to doing so. What motivates a partner’s decision to come clean and tell the truth? New research shows that a confessor’s motivation isn’t always pure. One of the strongest motivations for telling the truth to a partner? The belief that the lie that was told was going to be discovered. It’s fairly clear whose interests are being served by such confessions – the person who lied in the first place.

Source: Kearns, K. D. (2016). Unsolicited confession of deception in romantic relationships (Doctoral dissertation).


New Evidence – You Cannot Detect Deception

By Truth About Deception

New research confirms what has been known for decades. People’s ability to detect deception through body language is no better than flipping a coin. Even, gut-level reactions are no better than chance.

The only reliable way to detect deception? You have to know the truth about what the person is talking about. That’s how we catch people in their lies – we know when people aren’t telling the truth, because we already know the facts (or they eventually come to light).

Source: Franz, V. H. & von Luxburg, U. (2015). No evidence for unconscious lie detection: A significant difference does not imply accurate classification. Psychological Science 0956797615597333, first published on August 24, 2015.


The Most Insane Lies People Tell on Dating Profiles

By Danny Burns

Shared by our friend Danny Burns at Instant Checkmate…

Infographic about lies people tell on dating profiles


Good Lovers Lie

By Truth About Deception

If you are honest with yourself, you are probably aware that when it comes to love – the truth is necessary, but so too are lies.

A quote from Clancy Martin in a NYTimes piece on the topic:

“Love is a greater good than the truth. No marriage, no parent’s love of a child should be scrutinized like a pathologist examining his cadaver. Save your ruthless pursuit of the truth for the laboratory; we lovers would rather be like Shakespeare: “Therefore I lie with her and she with me / And in our faults by lies we flatter’d be.” Don’t worry so much about ferreting out the truth. Take care of each other instead.”

And similar quote from a difference source:

“When you take a step back and put it altogether, the picture that emerges about intimate relationships is somewhat contradictory: Because our romantic relationships are so rewarding, yet so constrictive, we are simultaneously more truthful and more deceptive with those we love. Additionally, we place the most trust in the person who is most likely to deceive us, just as we are most likely to deceive the person who loves and trusts us the most. These are just a few of the paradoxes that emerge when taking a close look at the use of deception in our romantic relationships.”