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Poll

If someone offered you (and over 1 million other people) a choice between 1 entry in a $250 drawing or 1 entry in a $1000 drawing, which would you choose, and why?

$250
$1000

Author Topic: Which prize would you choose?  (Read 5303 times)

app103

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Which prize would you choose?
« on: April 15, 2010, 06:54:01 PM »
Either choice is a free ticket, not only for you, but everyone else involved, too. There are two drawings, and you can only choose to enter one of them. Whichever choice most people make reduces the odds on winning that prize.

I am most interested in the justification behind your choice. Why would you choose the prize you did?

JavaJones

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Re: Which prize would you choose?
« Reply #1 on: April 15, 2010, 07:06:29 PM »
Well, I thought at first "most people will choose the $1000, so I'll get better odds with the $250", but then I realized $250 isn't really that much money, so I might as well go for something that I'd actually appreciate. Does that make me greedy? :D

- Oshyan

Target

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Re: Which prize would you choose?
« Reply #2 on: April 15, 2010, 07:17:33 PM »
FWIW, I'd go for the 1000

I wouldn't expect to win, but on the off chance that I did 1000 beats 250 any day (and I'd consider my chances to be equal in either draw)

parkint

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Re: Which prize would you choose?
« Reply #3 on: April 15, 2010, 08:52:50 PM »
I would choose neither.
I don't believe in sweepstakes (aka gambling) and never participate.  Afterall, by never expecting something for nothing I am NEVER disappointed!

Eóin

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Re: Which prize would you choose?
« Reply #4 on: April 15, 2010, 09:06:30 PM »
Is this supposed to be a logic/behavior problem as people are suggesting? Are you trying to second guess the other entrants and chose the drawing fewest of them would have opted for the increasing you chances of winning?

In that case I'd go for $250, seems likely to me that the vast majority would opt for $1000.

Of course if any more that 20% select the $250 draw then your expected return in a math sense is higher by entering the $1000 draw.

app103

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Re: Which prize would you choose?
« Reply #5 on: April 15, 2010, 09:56:04 PM »
Is this supposed to be a logic/behavior problem as people are suggesting? Are you trying to second guess the other entrants and chose the drawing fewest of them would have opted for the increasing you chances of winning?

That's up to you how you choose to analyze the question. I am just curious as to the reasons people would give for their choices, the thinking behind it. I asked this question to friends and family (offline) and the answers were rather interesting, so I wondered if the answers that DC members would give would be just as interesting.

Typical answer among friends & family
Based on the answers given by friends and family, I have come to the conclusion that most of them are in denial of their own greed. Typical answer was something like "I am not greedy, so I'll take the $250, because most people are greedy and will go for the $1000, giving me a better chance of winning the $250."

The way I see it, anything you do to increase your chances of winning is done out of greed. The only way your decision wouldn't be greed motivated is if you did something like toss a coin to determine which one to enter, or as parkint did and refuse to enter at all.


J-Mac

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Re: Which prize would you choose?
« Reply #6 on: April 16, 2010, 01:10:00 AM »
I wouldn’t choose either. IME such contests are usually designed to get something from me to you and not the other way around. I just ignore all contests, sweepstakes, etc.

Thank you.

Jim

CleverCat

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Re: Which prize would you choose?
« Reply #7 on: April 16, 2010, 03:11:57 AM »
I would choose neither.
I don't believe in sweepstakes (aka gambling) and never participate.  Afterall, by never expecting something for nothing I am NEVER disappointed!
:Thmbsup:

bgd77

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Re: Which prize would you choose?
« Reply #8 on: April 16, 2010, 04:31:42 AM »
Is this some kind of sociological study?  :)

Someone said that choosing 250$ over 1000$ shows that you are not greedy. But I think that in fact, you are greedy no matter what variant of this 2 you choose. If you consider that a person that goes for 1000$ in this kind of game is greedy, then everyone that plays this kind of game, no matter what the outcome, is greedy.

Also, this is not gambling. You do not pay for entering the draw, from what I understood. And even if you had to pay, it resembles more with lottery than with gambling.

I choose 1000$, but I think that Eoin is right, one has better chances when choosing the 250$ draw.

Perry Mowbray

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Re: Which prize would you choose?
« Reply #9 on: April 16, 2010, 05:13:50 AM »
Well I chose $1000 on the premise:
  • They are free
  • I'm getting one anyway
  • I can give the one I got for free to someone who'll appreciate it more (as a gesture basically, as 1/106 isn't great odds)

40hz

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Re: Which prize would you choose?
« Reply #10 on: April 16, 2010, 07:53:03 AM »
I'd go with $1K.

Since I have zero at risk, and the odds can't be logically determined from the information given, there's no point in going for a lower payoff.


Curt

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Re: Which prize would you choose?
« Reply #11 on: April 16, 2010, 08:10:28 AM »
why does taking the chance to win some money have to be equal with being greedy? I reject your argumentation.

Eóin

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Re: Which prize would you choose?
« Reply #12 on: April 16, 2010, 08:29:08 AM »
+1 I fully agree with Curt

AndyM

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Re: Which prize would you choose?
« Reply #13 on: April 16, 2010, 11:48:58 AM »
me too (agree w/ Curt)

I didn't enter a contest.

I clicked a checkbox because someone who started a thread here asked me to participate in a hypothetical something or other.

No survey here will give you info on anything but how we fill out a survey.  Even so, if you wanted to get closer to how people would truly respond (or how they think they would respond), you need to set up the survey with more detail and background.

But if you really wanted to know, offer two lotteries, one with a $250 prize, one with $1000, and make it so you can enter one or the other but not both, with no cost to sign up.  And see what happens.  (It'll only cost $1250, maybe a government grant?)

app103

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Re: Which prize would you choose?
« Reply #14 on: April 16, 2010, 04:01:24 PM »
I never said that anyone that responded to this thread was greedy. I never said entering a contest meant you were greedy. I am not sitting here judging any of you.

What I said was that my friends and family began their reason with "I am not greedy" and then proceeded to choose a prize they thought they had a better chance of winning, based on how they thought other people were greedy and would choose the $1000. I said they were in denial of their own greed by beginning their reasoning with a statement like that and then proceeding to take an action to better their chances of winning a prize.

And by the way, I don't happen to think that greed is always a bad thing. So it's not an insult for me to say that my friends and family have greedy tenancies. I believe we all do. It's part of being human. I know where my own are and I am not in denial of that part of myself. ;)

But if you really wanted to know, offer two lotteries, one with a $250 prize, one with $1000, and make it so you can enter one or the other but not both, with no cost to sign up.  And see what happens.  (It'll only cost $1250, maybe a government grant?)

But what I really want to know is not which prize you would choose, but why. I am more interested in the thought process behind it than the choice itself. Setting up an actual contest would be a mighty expensive way for me to satisfy a passing curiosity.

Why do I want to know? Because I was made an offer like this recently and I know the choice I made and my reasoning for it (I chose the $250 because I am greedy  :P), and I wondered about everyone else. Unfortunately, I have no way of knowing who else entered, what they chose and can't ask them why. And the why is the part I am most curious about.

MilesAhead

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Re: Which prize would you choose?
« Reply #15 on: April 16, 2010, 07:31:12 PM »
I would choose neither.
I don't believe in sweepstakes (aka gambling) and never participate.  Afterall, by never expecting something for nothing I am NEVER disappointed!

I can hear that.  In my philosophy, chance means, you might get hit by a meteorite while walking in the park.  When there's money involved, the flow only seems to go one way. :)

Edvard

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Re: Which prize would you choose?
« Reply #16 on: April 17, 2010, 03:53:25 AM »
I voted for the grand, not because I'm greedy, but because I sure could use the cash!  :P
I either win or not, so I figure my chances are 50/50 either way...
 ;)

(/me ducks before the math class pelts me with statistical tables...)

paarkhi

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Re: Which prize would you choose?
« Reply #17 on: April 17, 2010, 07:57:43 AM »
neither, becuase I dont like free money coming in, no sweepstakes, lotteries...

Eóin

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Re: Which prize would you choose?
« Reply #18 on: April 17, 2010, 02:02:01 PM »
I'm truly fascinated by the amount of people who would actually choose neither.

app103

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Re: Which prize would you choose?
« Reply #19 on: April 17, 2010, 02:51:52 PM »
I'm truly fascinated by the amount of people who would actually choose neither.

Me too! I did not expect that at all.

J-Mac

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Re: Which prize would you choose?
« Reply #20 on: April 17, 2010, 02:57:56 PM »
I'm truly fascinated by the amount of people who would actually choose neither.

Really? I approached this as if it were a real contest. I don’t enter contests as a rule; I have found that in virtually ALL cases the contest runners are looking to get something from me rather than give something away just because.  :)  With the usually poor odds of winning it just is not worth it to me.

Thanks!

Jim

40hz

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Re: Which prize would you choose?
« Reply #21 on: April 17, 2010, 03:12:17 PM »
I'm truly fascinated by the amount of people who would actually choose neither.

Me too! I did not expect that at all.

Yeah that is odd. I've heard of risk adverse, but non-risk adverse?

Not that it would matter in my case. I've earned my share of awards. But won prizes? No. In my entire life I have never won a free anything. Not a single contest, raffle, giveaway, or door prize.

I sometimes suspect the main reason I still occasionally buy a raffle ticket for a worthy cause is to see if this trend will remain unbroken rather than for my stated reason, which is: "to support the cause."

Otherwise, wouldn't I just make the contribution and not take a ticket if that were so?  ;)

 ;D
« Last Edit: April 17, 2010, 03:18:14 PM by 40hz »

app103

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Re: Which prize would you choose?
« Reply #22 on: April 17, 2010, 03:50:04 PM »
In my entire life I have never won a free anything. Not a single contest, raffle, giveaway, or door prize.

Maybe you should try this one next month. I have had excellent luck with it in the past.  ;)

Fred Nerd

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Re: Which prize would you choose?
« Reply #23 on: April 18, 2010, 07:52:12 AM »
I chose $1000 before reading the comments.
Reasoning was:
$1000 is, of course, more tempting, but on anything a bit strange, we tend to shy away to dodge 'the catch'. SO I figured people would do that, and I coud go for the original choice with good odds.
Then I voted and found out I would have done my 'opportunity'(since can't say 'done my money') again......