Commitment Requests Do Not Affect Truth-Telling in Laboratory and Online Experiments
Using a standard cheating game, we investigate whether the request to sign a no-cheating declaration affects truth-telling. Our design varies the content of a no-cheating declaration (reference to ethical behavior vs. reference to possible sanctions) and the type of experiment (online vs. offline). Irrespective of the declaration’s content, commitment requests do not affect truth-telling, neither in the laboratory nor online. The inefficacy of commitment requests appears robust across different samples and does not depend on psychological measures of reactance.