People’s success or failure to gain inclusion in groups may result from their own actions or the actions of others. Two studies compared the personal and interpersonal consequences of inclusion and exclusion when they resulted from these two processes. People’s own failure to “claim” inclusion in a computerized ballgame was equally detrimental for fundamental needs and made people equally unlikely to behave prosocially to group members, as being denied inclusion by others. In contrast, the beneficial effects of inclusion depended on the process with which it was obtained, and meta-perceptions of warmth mediated these differences; people who succeeded to claim inclusion thought their interaction partners liked them less than people who were granted inclusion, and as a result, their fundamental needs were satisfied less, and they behaved less prosocially.
- Social inclusion/exclusion