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How to tell the difference between persuasion and manipulation

“This way of thinking about manipulation tells us something about how to recognise it. It is tempting to think that manipulation is a kind of influence. But as we have seen, kinds of influences that can be used to manipulate can also be used non-manipulatively. What matters in identifying manipulation is not what kind of influence is being used, but whether the influence is being used to put the other person into a better or a worse position to make a decision. So, if we are to recognise manipulation, we must look not at the form of influence, but at the intention of the person using it. For it is the intention to degrade another person’s decision-making situation that is both the essence and the essential immorality of manipulation.”

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