People prefer tech they think is old – even when it’s actually not

A series of experiments found that people prefer technology they think was invented before they were born. The effect seems to hold if the technology isn’t really as old as people think it is


9 September 2022

By Jeremy Hsu

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People score tech more highly if they think it’s older than they are

Shutterstock/Fernando Blanco Calzada

People prefer technologies that were invented or commercialised before they were born. This “status quo bias” appears to hold true even when people think the technology is older than they are but isn’t actually.

Matthew Fisher at Southern Methodist University in Texas and his colleague explored the status quo bias through four experiments involving around 2500 adults in the US recruited through Amazon Mechanical Turk, a crowdsourcing platform.

The first experiment tested how people perceive aerogel, …

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