A forewarning is a warning of an impending influence attempt. Forewarnings include such phrases as, “and now a word from our sponsors,” that precede ads designed to persuade listeners. Consistent with the old adage, “forewarned is forearmed,” psychologists have discovered that forewarning often leads to resistance, which is decreased persuasion in the direction of the influence attempt. However, under certain circumstances, forewarning can temporarily lead to acquiescence, which is greater attitude change in the direction of the influence attempt. Research typically compares those who are forewarned to those who are not, relative to the processing they engage in and the resulting attitudes.

Background and History

The initial investigation on the topic showed that forewarning leads to greater resistance following an influence attempt. According to Jane Allyn and ...

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