Rumor as revenge in the workplace

Prashant Bordia, Kohyar Kiazad, Simon Lloyd David Restubog, Nicholas DiFonzo, Nicholas Stenson, Robert L Tang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)


Two studies that examined the role of revenge in rumor transmission and involved working adults as participants are reported. Study 1 used hypothetical scenarios to manipulate organizational treatment of an employee and the believability of a rumor. Participants had higher intention to transmit a harmful rumor when the organization broke job-related promises (i.e., breached the psychological contract) and revenge motivation mediated this relationship. Believability of the rumor had no effect. Study 2 used a field survey methodology and, controlling for social desirability, replicated the results for self- and peer-reported rumor transmission behavior. Study 2 also showed that participants belief in negative reciprocity norm strengthened the relationship between breach and revenge motivation.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)363 - 388
Number of pages26
JournalGroup and Organization Management
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2014

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