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01-06-2015 | Issue 2/2015

Journal of Business Ethics 2/2015

Disentangling the Effects of Perceived Deception and Anticipated Harm on Consumer Responses to Deceptive Advertising

Journal:
Journal of Business Ethics > Issue 2/2015
Authors:
Guang-Xin Xie, Robert Madrigal, David M. Boush

Abstract

Previous behavioral research on advertising deception has focused on the extent to which consumers would be misled by claims and implications of advertisements. The present research examines the effect of an important, but largely neglected, dimension: the severity of anticipated harm as a result of being deceived. Two experiments disentangle the effect of anticipated harm on consumer brand attitudes and purchase intentions from that of perceived deception. Interestingly, greater harmfulness increases diagnosticity of perceived deception, which partially accounts for consumers’ negative reactions to deceptive advertising. Theoretical, methodological, and ethical implications are discussed.

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