Wednesday, June 08, 2011

Sports Fan Science Part III

I am 2/3 of the way done with the book. This one is right in my wheelhouse on research. It is about the information processing heuristics and biases that influence sports fans. One thing that this study found was that the stronger you score on a measure of fan intensity, the more likely you are to experience overconfidence bias, confirmation bias, and hindsight bias. Basically, when we superfans watch games, we really see it differently. The refs are biased, his feet really were in bounds, etc. We also exhibit more of the coping behavior I talked about in Part I. We are much more likely to talk and read about games after a win than after a loss as part of our coping strategy. We are more likely to rationalize bad on-field (Zidane in the World Cup) and off-field behavior (even Michael Vick).

These biases are stronger for fans high on dimension 1 (see Part II) because we care more about the players, wins, and losses.