Trolley Problem Experiment Run IRL

by Eneasz 2y7th Dec 20171 min read9 comments

15


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1sl5KJ69qiA

Neat show. Claims to be the first time the Trolley Experiment was actually run in the real world.

The host of this show set up a Trolley Problem. Subjects were convinced they were part of a focus group about commuter rail. They're placed in a switching station, that mointors tracks remotely via CCTV, while waiting for the focus group to begin. A kindly old conductor shows them the ropes, and even has them switch a train coming down the tracks from one track to the other just for fun. Then he's called away.

While he's gone, convincing video footage is played of a 5-and-1 constructions workers stationing themselves on the two tracks. And then footage is played of an oncoming train that will hit the group of 5. The subject must choose to throw the switch or not, they don't have a lot of time, maybe a minute?

Test was run 7 times. How many people do you predict flipped the switch to save net-4 lives IRL? (answer in comment below)