In psychology, the false consensus effect, also known as consensus bias, is a pervasive cognitive bias in social inferences, such that people tend to “see their own behavioral choices and judgments as relatively common and appropriate to existing circumstances.
The False Consensus Bias refers to peoples tendency;
- Others share your beliefs
- Others will behave similarly
- Overestimate the extent to which their beliefs or opinions are typical of those of others
This false consensus is significant because it increases or decreases self-esteem, the overconfidence effect or a belief that everyone knows one’s own knowledge. It can be derived from a desire to conform and be liked by others in a social environment. This bias is especially prevalent in group settings where one thinks the collective opinion of their own group matches that of the larger population. Since the members of a group reach a consensus and rarely encounter those who dispute it, they tend to believe that everybody thinks the same way.
The false-consensus effect is not restricted to cases where people believe that their values are shared by the majority, but it still manifests as an overestimate of the extent of their belief