Too Busy to Be Manipulated: How Multitasking with Technology Improves Deception Detection in Collaborative Teamwork

Nathan W. Twyman, Jeffrey G. Proudfoot, Ann Frances Cameron, Eric Case, Judee K. Burgoon, Douglas P. Twitchell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Deception is an unfortunate staple in group work. Guarding against team members’ deceptive tactics and alternative agendas is difficult and may seem even more difficult in technology-driven business environments that have made multitasking during teamwork increasingly commonplace. This research develops a foundation for a nuanced theoretical understanding of deception detection under these conditions. The intersection of information technology multitasking and deception detection theories is shown to produce various and sometimes competing ideas about how this type of multitasking might affect truthfulness assessments in real-time teamwork. A laboratory study involving a collaborative game helped evaluate the different ideas using manipulated deception and multitasking behaviors in a real-time, virtual group environment. The results provide evidence that information multitasking can actually improve deception detection, likely because multitaskers engage less in the team conversation, making themselves less manipulable. As understanding of multitasking benefits increases, managers and designers can incorporate effective multitasking into collaborative processes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)377-395
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of Management Information Systems
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2 2020


  • Deception detection
  • StrikeCOM
  • credibility assessment
  • group work
  • multicommunicating
  • multitasking
  • performance

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Management Information Systems
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Management Science and Operations Research
  • Information Systems and Management


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