Judge Stephen

We are flooded daily with information. Yet, part of this information turns out to be false, inaccurate and even fake. Do you know the impact that this kind of information may have on internet users, yourself included?

We are researchers at the Université Libre de Bruxelles (Belgium) and have designed a quick psychology experiment (approximately 10 minutes), that will allow you to know what impact information you receive may have on you, regardless of whether it is true or false! Click here to take part. At the end of the experiment, you can watch a video with more information on our project, explaining in detail our experiment.

Note: All information that you communicate during this experiment is strictly anonymous and will only be used by us for scientific purposes.

Myrto Pantazi, Olivier Klein & Antoine Roblain

If you want to skip the experiment and just watch our video click here


In this experiment you will listen to a crime report describing the offense of a man called Stephen. This offense took place recently in the Brussels area. As it often happens in the court room, the report contains both true and false information. More precisely, you will listen to two witnesses, a woman and a man. While the woman tells the truth about the offense, the man lies. Your task is to listen carefully to the report and suggest a sentence for Stephen. We will also ask you to recall some details from the report.

It is important that you listen to the crime report attentively. Ideally, use headphones and make sure you are not interrupted!

Click here to listen to the crime report now

Listen to the crime report

You should listen to the crime report attentively, without pauses and interruptions and only once. This will ensure the reliability of your results. You will be allowed to move on to the next stage once you have listened to the report in its entirety.

Skip to the next step


Now that you have listened to the crime report describing Stephen’s offense, take some time to reflect on the sentence that Stephen should serve, in your opinion.

Please suggest an estimate of the duration of the prison term that Stephen should be sentenced to, in your opinion. Take your time to answer.

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10


Now please read each of the following sentences, and decide, first of all, if you recall listening to such a sentence. If yes, try to recall whether the sentence was true, (uttered by woman) or false (uttered by the man). Choose:

  1. T F N
  2. T F N
  3. T F N
  4. T F N
  5. T F N
  6. T F N
  7. T F N
  8. T F N
  9. T F N
  10. T F N
  11. T F N
  12. T F N
  13. T F N
  14. T F N
  15. T F N
  16. T F N
  17. T F N
  18. T F N
  19. T F N
  20. T F N
  21. T F N
  22. T F N
  23. T F N
  24. T F N
  25. The man The woman I don't remember

Thank you for your answers.

Now, we would like to have your opinion on a more general issue. Some political and social events are debated (for example 09/11 attacks, the death of Lady Diana, the assassination of John F. Kennedy). It is suggested that the “official version” of these events could be an attempt to hide the truth to the public. This “official version” could mask the fact that these events have been planned and secretly prepared by a covert alliance of powerful individuals or organizations (for example secret services or government). What do you think?

To answer, please indicate to what extent the sentence below represents how you think about this:

I think that the official version of the events given by the authorities very often hides the truth
Completely true (1) -> Completely false (10)
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

To finish, we ask you to provide us with some demographic information that will allow us to contextualise the results of this experiment

M F Other Yes No

Very low Low Medium Good Very good Native-like
Yes No Yes No Yes No Yes No