This bias, also referred to as the ‘knew-it-all-along effect’, is a frequently encountered judgment bias that is partly rooted in availability and representativeness heuristics. It happens when being given new information changes our recollection from an original thought to something different (Mazzoni & Vannucci, 2007). This bias can lead to distorted judgments about the probability of an event’s occurrence, because the outcome of an event is perceived as if it had been predictable. It may also lead to distorted memory for judgments of factual knowledge. Hindsight bias can be a problem in legal decision making. In medical malpractice suits, for example, jurors’ hindsight bias tends to increase with the severity of the outcome (e.g. injury or death) (Harley, 2007).

 

Harley, E.M. (2007). Hindsight bias in legal decision making. Social Cognition, 25(1), 48-63.

Mazzoni, G., & Vannucci, M. (2007). Hindsight bias, the misinformation effect, and false autobiographical memories. Social Cognition, 25(1), 203-220.

 

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