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The bystander effect is a social phenomena in which an individual is less likely to help a person in need when others are around. The bystander effect is believed to be driven by the thought that somebody else will handle the situation, a thought process that has lead to some deadly results in the past. No matter how potentially threatening a situation, and no matter how heroic an individual is, there will be a time when everybody succumbs to this behavior. I don’t think a person can be labeled as a bad person by not acting on a situation, or by not calling for help, but I believe the main reason the bystander effect happens is because of the possibility that a potential hero could be wrong. I have personally witnessed some situations that seemed more serious than they actually were, such as play fighting, and for the most part my first action is to observe the event rather than to intervene, or call for help. The bystander effect is basically 10 people taking the same stance on a situation and expecting another to call rather than to be labeled as a boy crying wolf. Public agencies have been running ad campaigns in an effort to quell the fire that is the bystander effect, but I think they need to first address the fact that there is no penalty for “overreacting,” so people should not fear any consequences. Nobody wants to call the authorities just to be told they are wrong about a situation, but if they can comprehend that they don’t need to fully understand a situation before calling for help, then many of the tragedies tied to the bystander effect will easily be averted.