AIS Transactions on Replication Research


This study reinvestigates the effects of normative and behavioral factors on privacy decision making by conducting a methodological replication of Adjerid, Peer, and Acquisti (2018). While the normative perspective regards consumers with stable preferences making rational choices, the behavioral perspective regards consumers with unstable preferences making irrational choices due to heuristics and biases. In three experiments, we demonstrate that normative and behavioral factors influence hypothetical but not actual choice. Our results, therefore, confirm the findings of the original study that objective differences in privacy protections influence hypothetical choice. However, in contrast to the original study, we found that relative changes in privacy protection did not influence actual but hypothetical disclosure as well. We argue that individuals have developed a stronger disposition toward privacy since the original study and that our German student sample represents a more privacy-sensitive case than the American Amazon Mechanical Turk sample. As a consequence, participants may have not been willing to indicate their true choice in the actual setting. In other words, effects may exist in the actual setting, but may not be elicitable from privacy-sensitive individuals. Future research is encouraged to explore other biases and the moderating effect of disposition to privacy.