Violations of health information privacy: The role of attributions and anticipated regret in shaping whistle-blowing intentions
We examine the role of attributions, the seriousness of wrongdoing, and emotion in shaping individuals' whistle-blowing intentions in the context of health information privacy violations. Based on 3 studies in which the intentionality of wrongdoing and the stability of wrongdoing were manipulated independently, we found consistent evidence that the intentionality of wrongdoing affects anticipated regret about remaining silent. The findings regarding the effect of stability, however, were mixed. In study 1, the stability of wrongdoing was found to affect anticipated regret about remaining silent, and in studies 2 and 3, stability was found to have a direct effect on whistle-blowing intention but no effect on anticipated regret about remaining silent. In the 3 studies, the seriousness of wrongdoing was found to have an effect on whistle-blowing intentions, but this effect was mediated by anticipated regret about remaining silent. Implications for research and practice are discussed.