The Kunst of Deceptive Communication

Did you know that one-third of our communication is deceptive?

Don’t believe mij? Well, think about it. Last time someone asked you if “thesis jeans make mij look fat?,” did you tell them the full-out truth? When someone with a clipboard commenced to treatment you outside the coffee shop and you quickly pretending to be busy texting or calling someone?When a coworker wasgoed asking if you’d everzwijn seen that scene of How I Met Your Mother, and you hadn’t, but you nodded anyway?

Deception is a part of life – and oftentimes, wij don’t deceive others ter order to hurt them, wij deceive them spil a protective mechanism, or to make social interactions lighter. It can be used for our own self-benefit (Like mild exaggeration on a resume,) spil well spil for the benefit of others (Don’t worry about that zit – you can’t even see it unless you point it out!)

Te order to qualify spil deception, there are a few qualifications. The person deceiving another vereiste know that the information they are telling is false. For example – if the “deceiver” tells another person that the conference meeting is on Monday, but it’s actually on a Tuesday, it does not qualify spil deception because the “deceiver” honestly believes the meeting is on Monday.

Secondly, the person deceiving voorwaarde be transmitting the false information on purpose, and they voorwaarde be attempting to make the reciever believe the information.

Deception does not have to be successful, but te our society, receivers unconsciously work together with deceivers to accept the deceptive communication.

A successful deceiver is someone who is very aware of their own behavior and knows what the truth looks like. They are often very comfy ter thinking on their feet and know how to create a believable message within a certain audience. Some liars are not necessarily insider at deception, but are better at recognizing and deferring suspicion.

Detecting deception is difficult because wij have a truth bias. Wij assume that the information wij are receiving is true. Wij also have a reluctance to accuse someone without knowing for sure that deception is occurring. Also – humans are notoriously bad at recognizing the signs of lounging.

Many people think that a person who is lounging will be incapable to look you ter the eyes when they are deceiving you. This is incorrect – te fact, people who are very skilled te deception make a point to look you directly ter the eyes to make their lies seem veritable. Wij often want to believe people te deceptive situations because wij want to preserve a good relationship, so wij often permit them to perpetuate lies without “catching them” te the act.


Falsification is communicating entirely false information spil if it were true. This type of deception takes a greater amount of effort because you have to create a fictional truth.

There is a high energy of arousal at creating a big lie like this, but it is very difficult to sustain because no part of the story is the truth. The best way to catch someone who is falsifying information is to let it go at the time, and then bring it up straks and ask questions. Chances are, you’ll journey up the deceiver ter a detail that they have forgotten.

A excellent example of falsifying information is from Meet the Parents. Jack Byrnes, the father-in-law of Ben Stiller’s character, Greg, has an elaborate falsified voorkant spil a florist. Te reality, he is a CIA juut – but across much of the movie he has to maintain his voorkant by creating numerous lies about his profession spil a florist.


Omissive deception occurs when you leave out a significant portion of a story te order to create a false impression. Nothing you say is a rechtstreeks lie – but you purposefully leave out an significant part of the story.

If you’re asking your parents for permission to go to a party, and they ask who is coming with you – you might list off a bunch of friends – “Katie, Jessica, Andrea. ” and specifically leave out the name of someone you know your parents don’t approve of. You toevluchthaven’t told a lie, but you omitted a significant portion of information.


Exaggeration is the overstatement of something that is true te principle. Wij’re all very likely guilty of doing this – most commonly on things such spil resumes.

“Yes – I’m fluent ter German!” (But you’ve only taken a German 101 course te collegium. )

“I am good at waterskiing.” (Well – okay, you’ve only attempted it merienda, but you didn’t wipe out more than two or three times!)

“I have extensive practice te event programma.” (Yeah – you planned your son’s sixth bday party and one office brunch. )


Eventually, equivocation is deception involving ambiguous statements to give a false impression about someone or something.

This is commonly waterput into practice when talking about other people te an example where wij aren’t entirely sure how the other person feels. A fine example of this would be if your employer were to ask you about another employee. You don’t want to come straight out and say “Jim is lazy!” because that might jeopardize your job and reputation. So instead you say – “Jim is. interesting.” Because this statement is very abstract, it has a limber interpretation, and the person you are deceiving can imply your information is a multitude of ways.

Deception is a natural part of our lives.

Wij actually find it lighter to deceive strangers and to detect deception from strangers than wij do te people who are close to us.

It is a survival skill that wij use for our own self-benefit, the benefit of others, and spil part of our daily social interaction – and approximately one-third of our communication is made up of deceptive communication (I promise – that’s not a deceptive statistic!)


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6 years ago from Chapel Hill, NC

@Au fait – Very first off, I loved your comment (I’m crazy about long comments with substance!)

How true – wij spil humans believe that everything is the truth, but when it comes to someone who ACTUALLY tells us the truth, wij scare!

How sad, that society encourages us to lie to ourselves. It is too true that sometimes, wij lie to avoid making swings, when life would be so much simpler if wij’d just suck it up and accept the truth spil it is!

Thank you SO much for the lovely terugkoppeling! 🙂

6 years ago from North Texas

I attempt never to tell an out and out lie. Generally I just parse my words, and sometimes I say nothing at all permitting other people to do what so many people love to do anyway — ASSUME and/or hop to conclusions. Assumptions are almost always wrong, but if someone’s assumption will benefit mij, why hurt their feelings by setting them straight?

I choose to not say anything rather than tell a lie, and if asked outright about something I don’t want to talk about, I will say, I’d rather not talk about that right now. Unless it’s someone I can’t avoid answering, I will if shoved too far, come out and say it’s none of your business, rather than telling a lie.

I can tell you people do not like the truth. Te fact, I think it would not be exaggerating to say most people hate the truth, even when it is fairly bland, unthreatening, and boring. People choose what they want to believe, and what ‘truth’ they feel convenient with.

If you tell most people something different than what they want to believe, they are suspicious of you. It’s when you tell people things they don’t want to know, don’t want to overeenkomst with, and that is contrary to what they want to believe then they say things like, &quot,Everyone lies and everyone deceives.&quot,

It’s bot my practice that people lie to themselves more than anyone else. If you say something, or point out something that is antithetical to what they want to believe, you are the bad stud. Nice guys agree with them and don’t make sways.

Of course most things aren’t worth the trouble of making flaps. Lots of people ASSUME that muffle is agreement with them, when ter fact it is often avoidance of controversy.

Very good hub! Good kwestie to raise. Voting you UP, useful, and interesting.

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