Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Messengers: Who We Listen To, Who We Don't, and Why” as Want to Read:
Messengers: Who We Listen To, Who We Don't, and Why
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Messengers: Who We Listen To, Who We Don't, and Why

by
3.84  ·  Rating details ·  50 ratings  ·  24 reviews
"In the age of fake news, understanding who we trust and why is essential in explaining everything from leadership to power to our daily relationships." -Sinan Aral

We live in a world where proven facts and verifiable data are freely and widely available. Why, then, are self-confident ignoramuses so often believed over thoughtful experts? And why do seemingly irrelevan
...more
Hardcover, 352 pages
Published September 19th 2019 by PublicAffairs
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Messengers, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Messengers

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 3.84  · 
Rating details
 ·  50 ratings  ·  24 reviews


More filters
 | 
Sort order
Start your review of Messengers: Who We Listen To, Who We Don't, and Why
Shelly
Jul 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: netgalley
Messengers: Who We Listen To, Who We Don't, and Why, is an insightful, engrossing and educative book. In the 21st century we find ourselves impacted more and more by influencers. We look to individuals we perceive as prominent and dynamic and take our social, professional, political and consumer cues from them. But how exactly does an individual gain the power to have influence over us, even when perhaps they should not? Why do some people with expertise, knowledge and good intentions get largel ...more
Lilisa
Oct 23, 2019 rated it really liked it
Well organized and insightful, this book is deftly packaged focusing on who we listen to, who we don’t and why. In an ever-increasingly over-crowded shrill world where competing interests and their backers are jockeying for our attention and vote - whether it’s on a product, service, or person - who carries “the message” is key. What drives us to suspend rational thinking and facts and be swayed by those influencers/messengers deployed to coax us into believing that which may or may not be true. ...more
Yzabel Ginsberg
[I received a copy through NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review.]

An interesting read altogether, although I sometimes found it too ‘light’ and superficial. Perhaps because of the many anecdotes it contains? On the one hand, they do help in getting the point, for sure, but after a while I felt that the book would be definitely more of an introduction (with the research quoted in it having to become the actual focus at some point) than a reference all of itself. Perhaps that was the goal a
...more
Barred Owl Books
Oct 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing
"In the age of fake news, understanding who we trust and why is essential in explaining everything from leadership to power to our daily relationships." -Sinan Aral

We live in a world where proven facts and verifiable data are freely and widely available. Why, then, are self-confident ignoramuses so often believed over thoughtful experts? And why do seemingly irrelevant details such as a person's appearance or financial status influence whether or not we trust what they are saying, re
...more
Daisy Dooley
Sep 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was a fascinating book bringing together research about the people who influence our lives and who we choose to listen to, and why. In Part One, 'hard' messengers are discussed. These are people who are seen as having socio-economic status, competence, dominance and attractiveness. In this context, it's explained why for example, celebrities are used to endorse high-end products such as perfume, They are selling the illusion that by buying those products, the consumer can achieve status the ...more
Norman
Sep 19, 2019 rated it really liked it
Messengers is a tour de force of information, illustrations and anecdotes about why we listen to some people but not others and the effect this can have regarding what we believe or don’t. There is a plentiful list of data from scientific research from which the authors draw their conclusions. At face value it’s an excellent popular level study and draws examples from the worlds of high finance, social media, celebrity and politics to name a few. It should be required reading for anyone who want ...more
MISS K DENTON
Oct 19, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Fascinating and well researched book which explains why we listen to some people over others. We live in an era where our leaders constantly lie to us and feed us biased or untrue information. This book gives some insight into why people believe them.

Easy to read and well thought out.
Richard
Oct 06, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobook
Disappointingly, nothing new here.
Val
Aug 31, 2019 rated it really liked it
Essentially the book tells us this: In the west, especially the United States, people listen to whoever has money, regardless of their experience or qualifications to comment on a subject. In the rest of the world, intelligence and actual knowledge are required to get people's attention. Which really comes as no surprise, and the situation is going to continue to escalate until no one in America even bothers to think for themselves (although whether they do now is debatable). The rest of the wes ...more
Tom Williams
Oct 08, 2019 rated it liked it
The subtitle of Messengers is ‘Who We Listen To, Who We Don’t, And Why’. In a world that has given us Donald Trump and Boris Johnson, learning the answer to this question seems worth the effort involving reading the book, but having finished it I’m not sure that I’m any clearer.

This is a pop psychology book with all the strengths and weaknesses of that genre. It starts out with a lot of anecdotes – some mind-blowingly banal (somebody who tweeted something on the same day that Barrack
...more
Theodore Kinni
Aug 02, 2019 rated it really liked it
A broad survey and synthesis of research regarding the qualities that make for effective messengers. Hard not to conclude that we’re pretty much idiots when it comes to choosing to whom we will listen, believe, and follow. (Pub date: 10/15/19)
Sue
Sep 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
The premise of this fascinating book is that we have a strong in-built tendency to believe the messenger rather than the message. It explains why "self-confident ignoramuses", even those with an axe to grind or pure self-interest at heart, are believed over experts - simply because we often can't separate the message from the messenger.

The book is a detailed study of such people in two parts, namely 'hard messengers' (who have lots of wealth / status, competence, dominance, attractiv
...more
Alison Bradbury
Oct 14, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book takes you by the hand and walks you through the different personality types of a whole range of messengers from Politicians to Social Media Influencers end even your friends. Chock full of supporting Psychological research, some really well known, some less well known but all equally relevant. It explains why during times of national crisis that voters tend to prefer a more robust leader who displays more dominant personality types, and why at the rest of the time voters are drawn to l ...more
Colin Marks
Nov 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
We all think we're a good judge of people and aren't easily influenced, but numerous studies have shown this isn't true. We're likely to be more patient if the car in front that doesn't move when a traffic light turns green is executive, and we're more likely to listen to Ian Botham tell us how to survive a nuclear attack than a scientist or someone from the military.

Messengers, by journalist Stephen Martin and psychologist Joseph Marks, discusses who influences us most, and why. The
...more
Sophie Childs
Oct 15, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
As a freelance copywriter, this was an incredibly useful book on why the messenger is just as important - if not more so - as the message and how you can make sure you're heard.

Easy to read and highly accessible, it covers a wealth of research which explains the complexities around getting people to listen and why it is we'll accept the same information from one source when we''d reject it from another.

It's a book which is invaluable to anyone who needs to communicate effectively, w
...more
Jessica Patient
Oct 12, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Messengers by Stephen Martin and Joseph Marks should be one of those books that everybody reads. This book looks at what makes us decide whether to listen to and if we trust their message. The authors, behavioural experts explore the traits that determine if we are heard or if we are ignored, showing how an appearance or financial status can have a huge impact on people listening if when the message might be wrong. Analysing the nature of speakers with they use cues, both verbal and physical to ...more
Komal
Nov 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing
In a world of political uncertainty and polarised views, it’s more important now than ever to understand what we pay attention to. This book illustrates that it’s actually the WHO rather than the WHAT that can matter the most.

Steve and Joe have done a brilliant job of dissecting 60 years of research into a 8 commonly found traits of effective messengers. The case studies and narratives within the book bring the concepts alive and applicable to our lives today.

A phenomenal book by... two very g
...more
Jayanne
Sep 19, 2019 rated it really liked it
Thank you to NetGalley for the advanced copy in exchange for an honest review! A really useful insight to the human psyche, who we listen to, and why. Quick and easy read with lots of points that raise awareness not only on society as a whole but with helpful knowledge we can apply to ourselves as well, whether to be more responsible about who we listen to, or in getting more people to listen to us in turn.
Leanne Neale
Sep 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A riveting and valuable insight into why people behave the way they do. The information has been gathered through numerous scientific studies and presented as a readily readable anecdote, not only to past and current significant events and crises, but also as a useful reference tool in understanding our own psyche. Thoroughly recommend.
MarmottanReads
Oct 05, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Really interesting delve into the world of communication and leadership, and how we can be seduced, put off or misdirected by various factors. In particular it focuses on status and the softer cues like charisma, i found this really interesting and will feed into my studies on business and leadership.
Anne
Oct 20, 2019 rated it it was ok
A did not finish unfortunately. I found the arguments and examples too simplistic and wasn't engaged with it. I did study psychology though so had heard of a lot before e.g. Milgram

Thank you to Netgalley for a free copy in exchange for an honest.
Georg
Sep 19, 2019 marked it as to-read
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Martin Weller
Oct 13, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Worked my way through this book, enjoyed some parts more than others, thought provoking in places, glad I read it
Sarah Wilson
Sep 14, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a fascinating and highly accessible read which was informative and entertaining at the same time. Recommended for people like myself who have a passing interest in the subject explored here, as well as working professionals.
Anton Eriksson
rated it really liked it
Nov 03, 2019
Dan Nicholls
rated it really liked it
Oct 26, 2019
Margo
rated it really liked it
Sep 09, 2019
Christa
rated it liked it
Oct 15, 2019
Kenneth Martin
rated it really liked it
Nov 02, 2019
Villa
rated it liked it
Sep 24, 2019
« previous 1 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »

Readers also enjoyed

  • The Lying Room
  • Olive, Again
  • Cold Storage
  • The Museum of Broken Promises
  • Confessions of a Bookseller
  • Mind Games
  • Criss Cross (Alex Cross, #27)
  • Take It Back
  • Between the Stops: The View of My Life from the Top of the Number 12 Bus
  • Akin
  • How to Play Dead
  • Renia's Diary: A Holocaust Journal
  • The Night You Left
  • The Secrets We Kept
  • The Dutch House
  • The Art of Dying
  • Talking to Strangers: What We Should Know about the People We Don't Know
  • I Will Make You Pay
See similar books…