Just a brief, speculative snippet this – rather than a full blog post. Via BPS research digest, I’ve seen the abstract of this paper in Computers in Human Behavior [unfortunately, it’s paywalled]. According to the abstract, though: “the results of two studies indicate that people who are high in openness to new experience and high in neuroticism are likely to be bloggers. Additionally, the neuroticism relationship was moderated by gender indicating that women who are high in neuroticism are more likely to be bloggers as compared to those low in neuroticism whereas there was no difference for men.” I found this slightly odd, as I am a blogger and I don’t consider myself to be particularly open to new experiences. I also consider myself to be neurotic, but as the studies indicated that there was no difference in the likelihood of neurotic and non-neurotic men becoming bloggers this probably isn’t relevant.What I did wonder about though, was whether my perception of myself as not being particularly open to new experiences was accurate. Perhaps perception of open-mindedness is a bit like perception of ability? Maybe there is something analogous to the Kruger-Dunning effect for open-mindedness. Thinking about this made me wonder whether the popular depiction of, for example, homeopathy apologists as being “so open-minded their brains might fall out” might, in fact, be an inaccurate impression. What if, despite their calls for open-mindedness, apologists for various supernatural / woo-ish peculiarities are actually closed-minded themselves? This struck me as not just a distinct possibility, but as very likely indeed to be true. Plenty of people have pointed out the intransigence and dogmatism of Alt Med supporters, but despite this the Altie apologists seem determined to foster the impression that they are (despite all evidence to the contrary) open-minded. Perhaps they are so closed-minded that they aren’t open to the idea that they may be closed-minded? It might go some way to explaining the discrepancy between their claimed and actual attitudes.
Anyhoo- I did say this was just a brief, speculative snippet so I’ll STFU now. Please post any examples you have of the closed-minded claiming to be open-minded below (or, indeed, examples of the closed-minded accusing others of being closed-minded). There should be plenty of examples out there – hopefully there’ll be some funny ones in amongst them.