Monday, 28 January 2008

Incentives and prizes?

One issue I have with the plan to set a competition and award a prize is that it might distort our evaluation of the successfulness of OpenSim for drawing new users into MUVEs. Someone could quite easily knock a big hole in our claims of success for the OpenSim pre-induction approach by pointing to the prize.

The other thing I've realised is that once the students are in Second Life for the pilot proper, they will need to be able to upload images, which will cost them 10 Linden dollars per texture. We are going to have to give them some cash to ensure that they don't hold back on the uploads. Might this promise of free cash serve as the legitimate and necessary incentive to participate?

What if the end products of the pilot, i.e. the knowledge sculpture artifacts, were set to 'for sale' by the students, and the deal was that the 'judges' went round and bought what they liked? (It's all starting to get a bit free market economy, perhaps.) The prices that the students place on their objects might reveal how much they valued the artifact that they created. "How much is this learning worth, in Lindens?"

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