Thursday, February 28, 2008

On-Line Economics Experiment

In economics there is almost no reason why anyone should pay for something they can get for free except for a warm glow motive (it just makes you feel good). Yet we support things like OPB quite robustly. So, I am going to give an economics experiment a try. I have added a PayPal donation button and I am curious if anyone will actually donate. I will let the world know the results of my reaserch, by the way.

By supporting the blog, you make the marginal cost/marginal benefit analysis tilt slightly more in favor of blogging in my off hours than, say, reading crime fiction to which I am addicted (though generally not American as it is usually terribly written - I am currently reading Swedish crime fiction, but my favorite is the Rebus series, partly because of my familiarity with Edinburgh in which they are set). However that is the substitution effect. The income effect may mean that since I am able to afford more crime novels, I will actually end up reading more and blogging less. So no guarantees.

8 comments:

Jeff Alworth said...

So, I am going to give an economics experiment a try. I have added a PayPal donation button and I am curious if anyone will actually donate. I will let the world know the results of my reaserch, by the way.

Yes, that's very scientific of you. Congratulations on the "experiment."

Patrick Emerson said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Patrick Emerson said...

All in the name of science. I'll even report the beer I purchase with the donation (that way it becomes a 'social science').

Now you see how it works - cynical man?

jessibeaucoup said...

Good luck with this...;).

Patrick Emerson said...

The beauty of it is that when no one donates I can just say, "see we economists were right about you self-interested ingrates all along" and never for a moment think it reflects the quality of my blogging! Perfect!

Jeff Alworth said...

Either that or you'll have to admit that with your traffic, you didn't have a statistically significant sample size.

(D'oh! Gotta get you back for the years of torment you dished out to bloggersin your pre-blogger incarnation.)

I'd chip some money in the jar, except that I'm a cheapskate.

jessibeaucoup said...

Will you be publishing your donor list and amounts? You know, in the interests of a free and transparent market or something...

Patrick Emerson said...

Sure, I think that'll be easy as no one in their right mind would do such a thing, the list is and will always be as follows:

Donors: 0
Amount: 0