Suppose there are three children A, B and C. A is friends with B. B is friends with C.

A however is indifferent towards C. But when B says to A that C is a nice person, A begins to feel so too.

Is there a name for this phenomenon? (say, liking by conduction, convection or radiation, ... or something along the lines of that.)

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    A is definitely being impressionable, though that describes the person, not the phenomenon. – Janus Bahs Jacquet Jul 23 '17 at 15:25
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    Or suggestible, in which case you could reasonably refer to the phenomenon itself as suggestibility - the quality of being inclined to accept and act on the suggestions of others where false but plausible information is given (cf gullible - easily deceived or cheated). Idiomatically, perhaps easily-led. – FumbleFingers Jul 23 '17 at 16:14
  • (You could have sheep-like for the adjective, but not sheepish - and certainly not sheepishness for the noun! :) – FumbleFingers Jul 23 '17 at 16:21
  • You're describing an everyday referral. It's not necessarily childish. Wouldn't you trust a friend to introduce you to your betrothed over a random meeting? – Yosef Baskin Jul 23 '17 at 17:06
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    I think there's no word like that… and did you mean … after people after someone…? – Robbie Goodwin Jul 23 '17 at 20:29

A begins to like C by extension.

B's good opinion of C is contagious.

A slight variant of your situation: A and B are friends, and B is a fan of C. Let's say B talks up C in conversations with A. Then we can say that B turns A onto C.

And now I'll invent something for this purpose. If A and B are friends, and B and C are friends, then A and C are likely to become friends by the transitive law of friendship.

If OP is still interested in this and is particularly interested in one or another of my suggestions, or is confused about anything, I'd be happy to provide documentation.

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Child A is more "apt" to liking Child B.


  1. having a tendency : likely plants apt to suffer from drought
  2. ordinarily disposed : inclined apt to accept what is plausible as true

Similiarity/Attraction Theory describes the phenomenon.

sharing similar attitudes provides corroboration that a person is not alone in his or her belief; they might even be correct to hold the attitude in question. Other possible reasons suggested for why people prefer others who are similar to themselves are that (1) knowledge of similar attitudes may help people to predict others’ future behaviors, providing a predictive “window” into the other’s behavioral predilections, and (2) people may be more likely to assume that others who hold similar attitudes to themselves have a greater chance of being attracted to them, a “likeness begets liking” explanation.

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predisposition is the word I would use
A was predisposed to C via B's good opinion

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  • This has the makings of a good answer but it needs a reference to a source and a citation of usage in order to be worthy of an up-vote, in my opinion. – Nigel J May 15 '18 at 11:48
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    I don't think predisposition works here; A is indifferent towards C 'originally'. – Edwin Ashworth May 15 '18 at 16:32
  • A good expert answer includes explanation, context, and supporting facts. This is what makes the answer useful – not only to the asker, but to future visitors to the page. Please consider expanding your answer. – MetaEd May 15 '18 at 16:40

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