Differences in Computer Mediated Versus Face to Face Negotiation

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Oates, Melissa
deception; technology; negotiation; Business and Corporate Communications; Communication Technology and New Media; Human Resources Management; Industrial and Organizational Psychology; Other Communication; Social Psychology
article description
Ninety Cal Poly students participated in a study to test the hypothesis that e-negotiators would be more likely than face-to-face (FTF) negotiators to employ unethical or competitive negotiation styles in a subsequent negotiation after being lied to in a previous negotiation. Sixty-four Cal Poly students were randomly assigned to partake in a computer mediated or FTF negotiation over the sale of a car. After the initial negotiation was completed, buyers in each condition were led to believe they had been lied to about the accident history of the car. Participants then completed The Incidents in Negotiation Questionnaire by Robinson, Lewicki, and Donahue (2000) and The Conflict Behaviors Questionnaire (Rahim, 1983). These questionnaires were used to compare e-negotiators' view of unethical behavior and competitive negotiation styles to views of FTF negotiators. Twenty-six participants did not negotiate but completed surveys and acted as a comparison group. An independent means t test was conducted, and a significance level of p< .05 was used. Contrary to the hypothesis, FTF negotiators reported a higher likelihood of using competitive negotiation styles, competitive bargaining, misrepresentation, and overall unethical behavior in future negotiations.