top of page

Subscribe to get the latest updates from Receptiviti

Lying Words: Predicting Deception From Linguistic Styles

In the Receptiviti LIWC Research Series, we highlight important research conducted using our platform and science that has implications for our customers' and partners' businesses and for society at large:


Liars and truth-tellers communicate in qualitatively different ways; liars tend to tell stories that are less complex, less self-relevant, and more characterized by negativity. Liars often use first-person pronouns at a lower rate than truth-tellers. The lower rate of self-references is believed to reflect an attempt by liars to “dissociate” themselves from the lie. Liars often use negative emotion words at a higher rate than truth-tellers. Liars may feel guilty, either because of their lie or because of the topic they are lying about. Because of this tension and guilt, liars may express more negative emotion. Liars often use fewer “exclusive” words (except, without, etc.), suggesting lower cognitive complexity. Telling a false story is a highly cognitively complicated task. Adding information about what did not happen may require cognitive resources that the typical liar does not possess. Liars sometimes use more “motion” verbs; also suggesting lower cognitive complexity. Because liars’ stories are fabricated, some of their cognitive resources are taken up by the effort of creating a believable story. Motion verbs (e.g., walk, go, carry) provide simple, concrete descriptions and are more readily accessible than words that focus on evaluations and judgments.


Read the article



Citation:

Newman, Matthew L., James W. Pennebaker, Diane S. Berry, and Jane M. Richards. “Lying Words: Predicting Deception from Linguistic Styles.” Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin 29, no. 5 (May 2003): 665–75. https://doi.org/10.1177/0146167203029005010.






If you enjoyed this article, get notified when there's new content!

Customer Stories

Customer Stories and Use Cases

Organizations of all sizes have integrated Receptiviti into their technologies and processes to uncover critical insights about the people who matter to their businesses.

Talent Evaluation

Learn how HR technology companies have integrated Receptiviti's language-based Big Five and DISC into their platforms.

LEARN MORE

Social Media

Use of Phone

See how Receptiviti powers social media monitoring technologies with point-in-time and longitudinal audience profiling and measurement. 

EXPLORE THE DEMO

Digital Health

Medical Consultation

Learn how digital health providers use Receptiviti to predict trajectories, optimize care delivery, and ensure positive outcomes.

LEARN MORE

Workforce Culture and DEI

work together

HR technology providers integrate Receptiviti to measure workplace culture and workforce wellbeing from aggregated open-end responses.

LEARN MORE

Marketing Communications

Marketing Comms.jpg

Learn how PR & communications agencies measure the personality of audiences, and optimize the communications they create to engage them.

LEARN MORE

Assessment and Coaching

Motivational Speaker

Learn how executive coaches and training providers use Receptiviti to enhance program effectiveness by assessing leaders' communication styles.

LEARN MORE

Public Markets

Earnings calls.jpg

Learn how investors and fund managers use Receptiviti to gain deep insights into the psychology of executives at publicly traded companies.

EXPLORE THE DEMO

What's your story?

Team Meeting

Speak with one of our subject matter experts to learn how Receptiviti can uncover insights about the people who are important to your business.

SPEAK WITH AN EXPERT

Ready to get started or have questions?
bottom of page