Friday, October 9, 2009

Confirmation Bias?

A reader writes in to ask, what's confirmation bias and what does it have to do with processing video evidence?

Good question.

Confirmation bias refers to a type of selective thinking whereby one tends to notice and to look for what confirms one's beliefs, and to ignore, not look for, or undervalue the relevance of what contradicts one's beliefs.

In our work, confirmation bias can corrupt results. It's supposed existence in forensic science is part of the reason why the NAS Report suggests separating labs from police facilities - implying that an LE officer who is also a forensic scientist would "work" the evidence towards a pre-determined conclusion instead of just processing the evidence and letting it stand as is.

No comments: