The curse of knowledge is a cognitive bias according to which better-informed people find it extremely difficult to think about problems from the perspective of lesser-informed people. The effect was first described in print by the economists Colin Camerer, George Loewenstein and Martin Weber, though they give original credit for suggesting the term to Robin Hogarth.

In one experiment, one group of subjects “tapped” a well-known song on a table while another listened and tried to identify the song. Some “tappers” described a rich sensory experience in their minds as they tapped out the melody. Tappers on average estimated that 50% of listeners would identify the specific tune; in reality only 2.5% of listeners could identify the song. Related to this finding is the phenomenon experienced by players of charades: The actor may find it frustratingly hard to believe that his or her teammates keep failing to guess the secret phrase, known only to the actor, conveyed by pantomime.

It has been suggested that the curse of knowledge could contribute to the difficulty of teaching.

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