I want to describe a group of people who are experiencing a kind of “echo chamber” effect, reinforcing each other’s beliefs, e.g.:

The clique tends to have a ____ culture: once someone suggests an idea, the whole group clings on to it.

I’m gravitating towards self-reinforcing and self-feeding, but these both sound hopelessly off the mark.

  • You might do better by considering inward-looking or one of its synonyms.
    – Mick
    Dec 11, 2016 at 11:18
  • You're talking about a form of cognitive bias, and the specific term(s) that applies is apt to be dependent on your specific scenario.
    – Hot Licks
    Dec 11, 2016 at 12:47
  • Psychologists have identified a related phenomenon they call group polarisation. Say individuals start with a range of views on a topic; then group interaction reinforces any initial tendency, so that the group will be more extreme than individuals were on average at the start. But the way you put it sounds more like everybody is always waiting for a new thing to jump on to the bandwagon. Hey, bandwagon culture?
    – Jacinto
    Dec 11, 2016 at 13:10
  • Positive feedback could work. It is, strictly, a biological and engineering term but could be applied sociologically as well. Positive feedback sounds like a good thing but can be very bad indeed, think about the howling you can get from sound systems or a machine shaking itself to pieces under certain operating conditions.
    – BoldBen
    Dec 11, 2016 at 16:47
  • 2
    Morgan & King call this "Group Think" I think.
    – Rohit
    Mar 31, 2017 at 12:44

7 Answers 7


Reading the Wikipedia article on Echo chamber (media), I found this line:

Another emerging term for this echoing and homogenizing effect on the Internet within social communities is cultural tribalism.


noun 1.1 derogatory The behaviour and attitudes that stem from strong loyalty to one's own tribe or social group
"a society motivated by cultural tribalism"

  • +1ing for an answer including the string of letters echo chamber, which is the correct term. Cultural tribalism is, to me, redundant (and anything but novel: though neither of these criticisms are an indictment of your answer, but of the digital sociologists who coined that term), and doesn't highlight the echo chamber effect specifically. I recommend you edit the answer to highlight echo chamber on its own.
    – Dan Bron
    Mar 31, 2017 at 13:25
  • @DanBron but "echo chamber" is already mentioned in OP.
    – NVZ
    Mar 31, 2017 at 15:10
  • I know, but it's still the right answer!
    – Dan Bron
    Mar 31, 2017 at 16:04


noun a person (especially a man) who agrees with everything that someone says : a person who supports the opinions or ideas of someone else in order to earn that person's approval

The clique tends to have a yes-man culture: once someone suggests an idea, the whole group clings on to it.

See usage examples on Google.


The result of a bit of research:

Consentient (Merriam Webster)

  1. disposed to agree with or conform to

  2. united in opinion, judgment, view



Sorry, I haven't been able to find a definition. I found that some other people have thought of this too, though. For example:

But when there are only two flawed parties to choose from—one consisting of a loose coalition of minorities and the other a self-homogenizing group—there’s really no room for a third, more honest option for those of us who fall somewhere in between. "What makes someone a ‘person of color’ or ‘white’ in America?" by Daniel Rivero, fusion.net

This phenomenon [trend of push-and-pull migration away from rural areas] isn’t unique to Galesburg. It happens in places like Quincy, Pekin, Elmhurst. The list goes on of these fuck-up towns. They become self-homogenizing. Then they run themselves into the ground because of their lack of diversity. "The Opposite of Suicide II" by Kyle Mustain, writingdisorder.com

Let's try it out in your sentence.

The clique tends to have a self-homogenizing culture: once someone suggests an idea, the whole group clings to it.


Perhaps zealous would fit:

marked by fervent partisanship for a person, a cause, or an ideal : filled with or characterized by zeal — zealous missionaries


The link has some literature examples.


What you're describing is similar to confirmation bias: the tendency to search for, interpret, favor, and recall information in a way that confirms one's preexisting beliefs or hypotheses. - Wikipedia. A clique would already have a culture and a collection of common beliefs. People contribute to that in a self-reinforcing, echo chamber manner.

I couldn't come up with a good way to shoe-horn it into the blank in your sentence, but you would get the same meaning with:

The clique tends to practice confirmation bias: once someone suggests an idea, the whole group clings on to it.

Confirmation bias goes to the mechanism driving people to say the things that the group will cling to. From the other direction, members of the group will cling to ideas suggested by other members in order to conform and strengthen the group: to act in accordance with prevailing standards or customs; the pressure to conform - M-W.

The clique tends to have a culture of conformity: once someone suggests an idea, the whole group clings on to it.

Comments are transient, and Rohit suggested a good term, so I'll preserve it here: groupthink: a psychological phenomenon that occurs within a group of people in which the desire for harmony or conformity in the group results in an irrational or dysfunctional decision-making outcome. Group members try to minimize conflict and reach a consensus decision without critical evaluation of alternative viewpoints by actively suppressing dissenting viewpoints, and by isolating themselves from outside influences. - Wikipedia.

The clique tends to have a groupthinking culture: once someone suggests an idea, the whole group clings on to it.



excessive or prejudiced support for one's own cause, group, or sex.

Oxford online dictionary


Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.