While people generally adhere to group norms for fear of disapproval or reprimand, anecdotal evidence and the occasional study suggest that high-status folk feel free to break rules—by eating with their mouths open, violating traffic laws, and expressing unpopular opinions. But how is nonconformity interpreted by others? Do we see it as a sign of status? New research, to be published next near in The Journal of Consumer Research, suggests that we do. The authors call the phenomenon the “red sneakers effect,” after one of them taught a class at Harvard Business School in her red Converse.
The New Yorker: Why Mark Zuckerburg Gets Away With Hoodies

While people generally adhere to group norms for fear of disapproval or reprimand, anecdotal evidence and the occasional study suggest that high-status folk feel free to break rules—by eating with their mouths open, violating traffic laws, and expressing unpopular opinions. But how is nonconformity interpreted by others? Do we see it as a sign of status? New research, to be published next near in The Journal of Consumer Research, suggests that we do. The authors call the phenomenon the “red sneakers effect,” after one of them taught a class at Harvard Business School in her red Converse.

The New Yorker: Why Mark Zuckerburg Gets Away With Hoodies