Cash disincentives

In the book Freakonomics, the author tells of the day-care centre that started charging parents a fine for turning up late to pick up their children.

The results? The number of late pickups increased after the fine was introduced.

What this shows is that the moral incentive for picking up the children on time is stronger than the financial incentive.

By paying bloggers, we move from a social contract based on reciprocity, to a financial contract based on cash: a social media program based on financial incentives will not alter consumer behavior for the better.

Instead, we need to use social currencies like recognition and admiration. We need to aim to create mutual respect, friendship and – who knows – maybe even a little love.

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