Krissy Wilson and Christopher C. French
Anomalistic Psychology Research Unit,
Department of Psychology,
University of London,
London SE14 6NW.
One hundred participants completed a News Coverage Questionnaire concerning personal memories of where they were, what they were doing and who they were with when news footage of dramatic news events was first shown on television, as well as asking them to recall details of the footage itself. These news items included four events that are known to have been captured on film and one item concerning nonexistent footage of the bombing of a nightclub in Bali. Overall, 36% of respondents reported false memories of the alleged footage of the Bali bombing. Participants reporting false memories were found to score significantly higher than those who did not report such memories on the Australian Sheep-Goat Scale, on various sub-scales of the Anomalous Experiences Inventory (Belief, Experience and Ability) and on the Dissociative Experiences Scale, supporting the hypothesis that believers in the paranormal may be more susceptible to false memories than non-believers.
Keywords : False memories; dissociation; paranormal belief and experience.