Confirmation bias (Wason, 1960) occurs when people seek out or evaluate information in a way that fits with their existing thinking and preconceptions. The domain of science, where theories should advance based on both falsifying and supporting evidence, has not been immune to bias, which is often associated with people processing hypotheses in ways that end up confirming them (Oswald & Grosjean, 2004). Similarly, a consumer who likes a particular brand and researches a new purchase may be motivated to seek out customer reviews on the internet that favor that brand. Confirmation bias has also been related to unmotivated processes, including primacy effects and anchoring, evident in a reliance on information that is encountered early in a process (Nickerson, 1998).
Nickerson, R. S. (1998). Confirmation bias: A ubiquitous phenomenon in many guises. Review of General Psychology, 2, 175-220.
Oswald, M. E., & Grosjean, S. (2004). Confirmation bias. In R. F. Pohl (Ed.), Cognitive illusions: A handbook on fallacies and biases in thinking, judgement and memory (pp. 79–96). New York: Psychology Press.
Wason, P. C. (1960). On the failure to eliminate hypotheses in a conceptual task. Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology, 12(3), 129-140.