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Speed camera lottery

  (+5, -1)
(+5, -1)
  [vote for,

People are odd.

Most of us speed, because there's only a small (maybe 1/1000) chance of getting caught on any one occasion.

Many of the same people buy lottery tickets because there is a small (1/1000,000) chance of winning on any one occasion.

Putting these two facts together, it's clear that speed cameras work the wrong way around.

Instead of the current system, speed cameras should detect people travelling at or below the speed limit and, one time in a million or so, that person (identified by their number plate) would win a significant sum of money.

MaxwellBuchanan, Apr 03 2015

Baked http://www.wired.co...ivers-to-slow-down/
This is an oft-cited example of 'gamification'. Fines are collected from people over the speed limit and then paid out in a lottery to people who drive under the speed limit. [hippo, Apr 07 2015]

Baked http://thegovlab.or...ry_(The_Fun_Theory)
More info on the Swedish speed camera lottery [hippo, Apr 07 2015]


       Brilliant! I think you may be on to something here.
scad mientist, Apr 03 2015

       One possible revision. At least in the US, people get really itchy about being tracked. A speed camera that takes a picture when someone is detected to most likely be breaking the law is one thing. A camera that photographs everyone who isn't breaking the law to put them in a drawing might make people worry about abuse of the system. As an alternative, the cameras might be designed so they normally don't take pictures, but based on a low probability random number generator will occasionally take one for the lottery. Alternately cops on patrol could take photos of people who appear to be driving safely.   

       Though I would worry some about corruption. Need to ensure that everyone has a fair chance.
scad mientist, Apr 03 2015

       Maybe just aim at being revenue neutral. I think his idea would be effective for getting many people who drive over the limit to drive a the limit, but we still need to give tickets foe people who drive excessively fast or that will become common. If all the funds from tickets was distributed via the non- speeding lottery it would have the side benefit of eliminating accusations of police departments giving tickets for revenue generating purposes.
scad mientist, Apr 03 2015

       This is a truly brilliant idea. Think of all the time not wasted in arguments and court trials about speeding. Also reward is a much better motivator than punishment. So the effect might be dramatic. Keep a few speed traps, though, for the hard-boiled adrenaline freaks. Where else could this principle be applied? - Thank you for not carrying spray color cans for your unwanted graffiti? - You are the 5.000th customer of our shop not caught lifting a pack of chewing gum. Congratulations. --- Some time ago I ran into a speed trap. After an hour of consciously avoiding going over the limit, I thought of something else, and bam! I deemed this highly unjust, given my prior behaviour. It would have mollified me if I at least had the chance to offset the speeding ticket with the non-speeding gratification. -- Maybe Steven Levitt and his Freakonomics team could get a grant for a test run of this idea.
Toto Anders, Apr 03 2015

       There could be an opt-in shape on license plates so those who don't mind being tracked as long as they can be in the lottery can make that choice and everyone else can stay anonymous.
Voice, Apr 03 2015

       I have for sale maps of the camera locations so you can all slow down for a few seconds to get a shot at the legal speed lotto. And(+)
cudgel, Apr 03 2015

       In some places, it is mandatory to put up signs warning motorists of speed cameras, which sort of defeats their object.   

       However, if the camera gave a reward instead of a penalty, it might not be necessary to show their locations. In that case, lots of mobile cameras could move around day by day, so that motorists would always be in fear of missing their chance to get rich.
MaxwellBuchanan, Apr 03 2015

       I forsee people driving 'round and 'round the block for multiple chances
Voice, Apr 03 2015

       Brilliant, but reward fluid traffic using streetlight sync speed +- 5% for target instead "at or bellow speed limit" when available.
piluso, Apr 03 2015

       spelling streetlight : traffic light And doesn't synchronized really mean networked ? which doesn't necessarily mean the traffic lights are simultaneous.
wjt, Apr 03 2015

       Maybe this idea could be transformed into a zero-sum game where some of the original speed traps remain and the fines which they help gathering become the lottery prices.
Toto Anders, Apr 04 2015

       That would work. In fact, it could be a net-loss game for the drivers (just as the lottery is a net-loss game), with only part of the penalty revenue going into prizes. The underlying psychology is that people value positive opportunities (a very remote chance of winning) more than they fear negative opportunities (a small chance of getting a penalty).
MaxwellBuchanan, Apr 06 2015

       Nice. Very lateral.[+]
the porpoise, Apr 06 2015

       Fantastic idea, but baked (see link).
hippo, Apr 07 2015

MaxwellBuchanan, Apr 07 2015

       More gold now, please.
bungston, Apr 12 2015


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