Learned a new term today; Pluralistic ignorance.

In social psychology, pluralistic ignorance is a situation in which a majority of group members privately reject a norm, but incorrectly assume that most others accept it, and therefore go along with it.[1] This is also described as “no one believes, but everyone thinks that everyone believes.” In short, pluralistic ignorance is a bias about a social group, held by a social group.[2]
Pluralistic ignorance may be able to help us explain the bystander(witness) effect that people are more likely to intervene (help) in an emergency situation when alone than when other persons are near.[3] If people study how others act in a situation, they may notice that people will decide not to help when they see that others are not getting involved. This can result in no one taking action, even though some people privately think that they should do something. On the other hand, if one person decides to help, others are more likely to follow and give assistance.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pluralistic_ignorance

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