The well-established notion that the frequency of self-interested unethical behavior increases among anonymous people was reexamined employing a more strict definition of anonymity, voluntary unethical behavior, and adult individuals. Anonymity was defined as nonassociability of the participant’s traits with respect to unethical behavior. The participant’s identity and a monetary reward were manipulated as the independent variables, while cheating behavior was observed as the dependent variable. A sample of 143 undergraduate students were randomly assigned to 1 of 4 conditions (nonidentifiable–reward, identifiable– reward, nonidentifiable–nonreward, or identifiable–nonreward condition) to flip a coin twice in the experimental assignment. Results indicated that participants behaved differently depending on anonymity status and reward status. Implications for unethical behavior among anonymous individuals are discussed.
"Reexamination of the Association Between Anonymity and Self-Interested Unethical Behavior in Adults,"
The Psychological Record: Vol. 59
, Article 7.
Available at: http://opensiuc.lib.siu.edu/tpr/vol59/iss2/7