Incentives for Participation

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Study by Tobias Assman, a student of Howard Rheingold, which discusses and examines the Crowding Out between Intrinsic vs. Extrinsic Motivation



"I will start off with the discussion in the blogosphere whether community sites should pay their top members for contributions. Since bloggers are the frontier of contributions to the wider internet community, I follow up with a summary of the specific problem they have, when accepting payments for their contributions: losing their independence. Since payment for contributions is handled differently at different sites I go on with an overview of their payment schemes. Offering financial rewards for contributions to online communities basically means mixing external and intrinsic motivation. Since that is an issue widely discussed in the academic world, I will present some interesting examples of an effect occurring in this context. In all of these examples, a very interesting effect occurs, which social sciences summarize in their so called "Crowding Theory". The following section introduces this theory and concludes with implications for the management of an online community." (