The bystander effect refers to how one or more onlookers respond to a person in distress.


In some situations, bystanders do not go to the help of someone in trouble.


In other situations bystanders do offer assistance. Sometimes when one person responds then others come forward.


Some factors determining the bystander’s response:

(1) The number of bystanders present.

(2) The level of perceived danger.

(3) The certainty or awareness of the situation.

(4) The culture of the bystanders.

(5) The relationships between the bystanders and the victim. Levine and Crowthe studied situations where the bystanders were friends versus strangers and situation when the bystander and person in distress were of the same social group.

(6) Whether an onlooker is encouraged or discouraged by someone else to respond.


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