September 10, 2007 at 8:02 am
In France 99.9% of their citizens are organ donors, as apposed to only 28% of Americans. Why are the French dying to give people their kidneys and corneas more often than Americans? Because in France the default position is to be donor, whereas in most US states you have to sign something to indicate that you wish to be donor. According to the blog We’re Only Human run by The Association for Psychological Science this is because of something called “‘default heuristic’ which basically says: If there is a default position, don’t question it.”
Holy crap, that’s exactly how I got fat. It’s also why I keep getting e-mails about kitty litter. When I register with sites online to redeem my Paw Points from boxes of kitty litter or to comment on message boards or just to read the stupid New York Times online, I have to fill out forms – forms with lots and lots of checkboxes. Sometimes the boxes are unchecked, but sometimes they are already checked for me, as if the webmaster [...]
April 26, 2007 at 9:52 am
After college I took a job doing phone surveys to help pay the bills before I was able to find a “real” job. It wasn’t telemarketing. I doubt I would have lasted an hour as a telemarketer before hanging up my headset and searching under the desk to find my lost soul. The company I worked for conducted focus groups about new products and needed to find people in a certain demographic to get their input on whatever out clients were testing. We called, asked people questions, and if they fit the parameters we invited them to the group.
I learned a lot about people. Some people were willing to lie to try to get into the group so they could get paid the participation fee. I went through about 3 pages of a diaper survey with a woman before I asked her what cartoon character was on the side of the brand name diapers she had supposedly bought, but she couldn’t give me the correct answer. Then I had to go back through 3 pages [...]