The Bystander Effect – What Would You Do?


The bystander effect, or bystander apathy, is a social psychological phenomenon that refers to cases in which individuals do not offer any means of help to a victim when other people are present. The probability of help is inversely related to the number of bystanders. In other words, the greater the number of bystanders, the less likely it is that any one of them will help. Several variables help to explain why the bystander effect occurs. These variables include: ambiguity, cohesiveness and diffusion of responsibility.

In the video below, a live situation was tested at the Liverpool Street Station in London with 3 different actors, a homeless guy, a woman and a business guy. People reacted differently to each of them.


bystander effect



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  1. That always upsets me when I see something like this. What the hell, why would you keep walking if you saw someone hurt, the fuck is wrong with you? What if it was you, how would you feel to be hurt or helpless when help is available and they just ignore your being. Bystander effect, what an excuse, diffusion of responsibility, my ass, they’re all inhuman uncompassionate scum. How can one not care about someone else’s pain and suffering.

    • People act irrationally when they are a part of a group. It is happening worldwide in many things like ignorance, false patriotism and things that are ‘cool’’s human nature as a ‘flock’ to behave like this. But everyone has a choice!

    • My daughter, who is Irish, living in London, stopped and brought a woman who was in a hospital gown drinking a can and looking distressed outside a well known psychiatric hospital back to the hospital where the woman had obviously gotten out of unnoticed.The woman was clad only in an open backed hospital gown. My daughter was shocked at the amount of people walking past this woman and were totally unwilling to help. Very proud of her today 🙂

  2. i am in mississippi, which is a double edged type of place where more strangers would help but i am the only white person i know who is close to certain the government will murder me if this whole thing wasn’t so predetermined. only talking for me but my awakening was forced up like a tidal wave assuming its height because it is being pushed by the beach. Similarly,some of us know that we know God in the oddest of ways, and if we die we die without fear.


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