Humans aren't the only species to be influenced by marketing spin, closest primate relatives like apes and chimpanzees are susceptible too, reveals a new research.
A Duke University study has found that positive and negative framing make a big difference for chimpanzees and bonobos too.
In experiments conducted at Tchimpounga Chimpanzee Sanctuary in the Republic of Congo and Lola ya Bonobo Sanctuary in the Democratic Republic of Congo, researchers presented 23 chimpanzees and 17 bonobos with a choice between two snacks, a handful of nuts and some fruit.
Chimps and bonobos were more likely to choose the fruit over the nuts when they were offered a smaller amount of fruit but sometimes got more, versus when they were initially offered more but sometimes got less, despite receiving equal average payoffs in both scenarios.
The preference for the option framed as a prize rather than a penalty was especially strong in males, the researchers found.
Co-author Christopher Krupenye said that people tend to prefer something more when you accentuate its positive attributes than when you highlight its negative attributes, even when the options are equal.
Krupenye added that historically, researchers thought these kinds of biases must be a product of human culture, the way they're socialized or their experience with financial markets, but the fact that chimps and bonobos, humans' closest living primate relatives, exhibit the same biases suggests they're deeply rooted in human's biology.
He added that that means it's very difficult to overcome these biases, but it is possible to create environments that might help humans make better choices.
The study appears in the journal Biology Letters.