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Sunk Cost and Commitment to Dates Arranged Online

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Abstract

The influence of prior, irretrievable, investment (sunk cost) on commitment to a date arranged online was investigated. Participants were recruited from an undergraduate population. There were 145 participants (86 female) with a mean age of 19.42 years. Participants took part in a computer simulation of the process of arranging a date online. Participants invested one of five amounts of sunk cost into this process. Participants were then presented with the choice of attending the date arranged online or attending a (superior) blind date. Participants chose how much time that they wanted to commit to the (inferior) date arranged online. Results revealed a significant sunk cost effect (p = 0.003). The implications of the sunk cost effect having an influence over human relationships are discussed.

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Correspondence to Martin D. Coleman.

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Coleman, M.D. Sunk Cost and Commitment to Dates Arranged Online. Curr Psychol 28, 45–54 (2009). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12144-009-9042-5

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