What Does Standing Around Do?

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Someone just got hit by a car, what do you do? Do you decide to sit back and watch simply because everyone else who is around will handle the situation? This is what many tend to do resulting in the bystander effect. This social psychological effect is described when an individual doesn't offer any help in an emergency when others are present. This problem is inversely related to the number of bystanders which simply means the greater number of bystanders, the less likely that anyone will act and help.

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I found an article on CNN which explained that two years ago a fifteen year old girl from California was gang raped, which preceded to her getting beat outside the homecoming dance at the school. Hundreds of students gathered in the gymnasium at the school for the dance and in a dim lit alley outside the victim was being raped. The title of the article was called "Gang rape raises questions about bystanders' role", which is easily getting at the bystander effect. Some witnesses took photos, but others preceded to laugh. As more and more people found out about this event, people came to see and some even began to participate. Other than such a disturbing event such as this one, people need to come to realize that doing something simply like dialing for the police can help out any given situation by a ton.


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This article is too much alike from other stories. It absolutely sickens me how no one would do a thing. I have taken Step-Up classes to be that person to take action. I understand that one can think that by calling you are now involved with the situation, but don't you want to be. Don't you want to be that person that makes a difference in someone's life when it could easily be life or death. I think people need to know that it is okay if the police is called more than once. They know who is responding to what location they will know if someone has already called. So what does it hurt having one more call to the police it could be the only call.

I as well came across that same article you mentioned when exploring the bystander effect and similar ones where people were killed and a small girl was even abducted. It's unreal to think that when more people are around it's less likely you will be helped!

This is one worth thinking about social problems.I will talk about one my experience and one story the same like this blog. In my country near the road I often some people like young men or women, kids, old people was kneeling on the ground and writen some words on a paper"can you give me some money, I didn't eat for many days" or "I have no money go home", at this time what should I do, I given them some money, but when a came back for some hours she/he still stay here. Did she/he have no money go home? the other story. An old lady fell on the road, the side of the road a man to help her, the last defendant in court said he was pushed to the grandmother, which seeks compensation. If all things like this, who can help? The end is people Taileng Mo, or society is not so simple.

I have always heard this as being true but when I think about someone stealing a bike or beating someone up in an alley that if I was with a group of friends I would be more likely to do something as we would likely conform to stop their actions. Nonetheless, it does almost seem like the people that took pictures should be somewhat guilty just like the people doing the actions.

I have heard many cases about things like this, especially in psychology. This is a good example of the bystander effect. I also think that the Kitty Genovese example is a very good representation. When I am in a large group, I usually rely on others to act on a situation, but I think when something like this happens, everyone should act right away. It's quite surprising that the bigger the group, the less likely there will be action.

Unfortunately, I have always been aware of this effect. Teaching CPR/First Aid at the Red Cross the first thing we express to people is the importance of what we call " Willingness to Act". It's actually considered one of the first steps in any course you will take. Also, one of the first things we learned in EMT (Emergency Medical Technician) training was about the possibility of a lot of people gathering around and simply watching. A lot of times EMS crews have issues with bystanders actually interfering with medical care on scenes because they're watching events unfold like it's an episode of CSI.

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This page contains a single entry by ullma027 published on April 24, 2012 12:23 AM.

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