We all hate finding out we are wrong. We might enjoy the humiliation of a blow hard being proven wrong or laugh at the slap-stick that a wrong premise can lead a character to repeat over and over. We recognize it as uncomfortable, painful and regrettable.
The thing about being wrong, as Kathryn Schulz author of “Being Wrong: Adventures in the Margin of Error” points out, it feels just like being right. Until we find out we are wrong we can feel pretty good. I got in an argument when I was a kid about whether a certain plant was poison ivy. I was certain it was a Trillium that was not yet flowering. “So rub your face in it!” was her response. I did. I was wrong.
Sometimes we can realize we were wrong and continue as if we were right because we think we have too much to lose. Sometimes they get it so wrong we have to bring them to justice, or to the court of public opinion, or just remind them, frequently.
Being wrong has been used to describe being different.
The predominant wrong view of the world shifted to Galileo’s. The benefits of embracing new information usually outweigh those of doggedly adhering to the rightness of being right. For research scientists being wrong can be exciting.
Being wrong is often more interesting from a story point of view than being right. Funny or sad, it is a part of all our lives because we are human.