Forbes Technology Council: Frogs, Credit And AI: Let's Change The Story
Apr 13, 2022
For centuries, frogs have been victims of experimentation by the medical community. Now, even psychologists are after them. Here’s an oft-repeated tale.
A live frog is placed into a pot of boiling water, and it jumps out immediately. The frog is then placed in cool water and the temperature is raised slowly. The frog continues to sit in the water and eventually dies as the water starts to boil, having waited too long to jump out. However, there is a twist in that tale. Something surprising happened when someone turned the story into an actual experiment (registration required): The frog jumped out as soon as the temperature got uncomfortable.
So why is the original narrative such a compelling story?
The story compels us to vividly see the boiling water, the complacent frog and then the panic-stricken creature. It also hits our risk aversion bias—the bias toward safety and loss avoidance—by exaggerating the possibility of death. Such stories become significant anchors of our worldviews because their takeaways align with the common knowledge or beliefs of our time, despite the facts and research.