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Witnesses comments about someone elses state of mind.

Witnesses comments about someone elses state of mind.

Postby megaman » Wed Mar 08, 2017 8:54 pm

I have read a consolidation of studies where people have been asked to look at faces and say what emotion they are showing.
these are always multiple choice style answers.

The studies consistently showed that people are very poor at determining a persons emotional state by facial expression.
for most emotions the correct scores were bellow chance levels (so if there were 4 options for each face shown people would get it right less than 1/4 of the time)
This suggests that facial expressions actually send a wrong message.
a few emotions had higher average correct scores however people selected these emotions when they were an avaliable option more often as so there were more false selections for these.

The paper also suggested that other things people may use to determine someone elses emotion are also equally unreliable. (although no data was used to back this up)

The paper also expressed concern that some lawyers believes that when a witness made a statement like
This person was very "insert emotion here" he was "insert body language/demenour/behavior here" has great weight with jurors.

If a witness makes such a statement are there any laws regarding it?
are such statements inaddmissable?
is a judge required to give the jury a warning about it?
could it be argued that such statements are hearsay?
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Re: Witnesses comments about someone elses state of mind.

Postby Smouldering Stoat » Wed Mar 08, 2017 9:04 pm

1) No.
2) No.
3) No.
4) No.

You keep returning to this issue. Sorry, but it is not going to change: jurors use their experience to assess the credibility of witnesses. They are entitled to hear the whole story from those witnesses. Sometimes that evidence may point towards the defendant's guilt; on other occasions it may be useful for the defence.
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Re: Witnesses comments about someone elses state of mind.

Postby dls » Thu Mar 09, 2017 5:07 pm

MM, your scepticism is proper, but please do not think that such elements are i=unknown to courts.

After that. ss is right.
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Re: Witnesses comments about someone elses state of mind.

Postby shootist » Thu Mar 09, 2017 6:44 pm

I would be very sceptical about any such 'experiments'. Who decides a face is 'angry' for instance. How do they decide that? Did they get someone to 'act' angry, or did they use images of an angry person without their consent? Also, still images do not adequately convey the context of the reaction.

The paper also suggested that other things people may use to determine someone elses emotion are also equally unreliable. (although no data was used to back this up)


That sentence alone cast great doubt upon the paper as a whole.
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Re: Witnesses comments about someone elses state of mind.

Postby megaman » Thu Mar 09, 2017 8:55 pm

shootist wrote:I would be very sceptical about any such 'experiments'. Who decides a face is 'angry' for instance. How do they decide that? Did they get someone to 'act' angry, or did they use images of an angry person without their consent? Also, still images do not adequately convey the context of the reaction.


It did not say,
and i myself had thought the exact same thing.
I would like to see some studies where the test is reversed (ie people have emotions and psychologists describe their faces at this time)

Since this was a consolidation of many similar studies there would have been many variations.
It did say that earlier studies used wooden faces with features carefully measured.
later studies, having been criticized that this may not be reliable, used real faces. The outcomes of the experiments were the same.

One study trriggered a range of emotions/states of mind in babies. However in my opinion the only one that can be reliably caused is pain.

The paper also suggested that other things people may use to determine someone elses emotion are also equally unreliable. (although no data was used to back this up)


That sentence alone cast great doubt upon the paper as a whole.[/quote]

I will have to review that sentance and get back
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