Quote Drift is the phenomenon where you have a quote you enjoy from a movie or T.V. show and you go around repeating it constantly for an extended period of time. But when you finally get around to watching the original piece again (an event you’re looking forward to) you discover that the original is quite different from what you’ve been saying.
This is quote drift.
Each time you said it there were slight deviations, and over time it morphed into something totally separate from the original. You’ve seen it happen many times; now you have a name for it.
What I find interesting about it is that it causes one to question what they really remember, and what really did happen.
If you’re sure that this line was said with this particular tone, and it’s burned into your brain, it can be quite jarring to find out you were wrong that whole time. And that should make us ask what else we could be wrong about.
There is research that says we change our memories when we access them, which is why witness testimony isn’t nearly as powerful as it used to be going backwards. And this is a solid improvement to our justice system given how flawed our memory really is.
Just remember to go back to your favorite quotes every once in a while, to make sure they really said it that way.
[ Oct 9, 2007 ]