Instead Of Bad Drivers, What If Speed Cameras 'Caught' Good Drivers Instead?
from the carrot-or-the-stick dept
We’ve written at length here about the multitude of problems with speed cameras. What if, instead of focusing on punishing speeders, the speed cameras were used to reward good behavior? Drivers who obey the speed limit are automatically entered into a lottery and then notified by mail if they’ve won. So, you might pick up your mail one day with a letter from local law enforcement and a check for good driving behavior, rather than a fine for bad driving behavior. This is somewhat reminiscent of the idea from a few years ago where police would pull over good drivers and “reward” them with free coffee coupons — but avoids the whole “pull over” part, which certainly upset some drivers.
The idea is that the jackpot could come from the fines that were paid from speeders — so not only do you get rewarded, you get rewarded from the pockets of worse drivers. This method may also serve to make a speeding ticket feel even more painful than just a fine alone. After all, a $500 ticket definitely stings, but a $500 ticket PLUS a little note that had you not been speeding, you could have won $10,000 instead? Ouch, that hurts a lot more.
The idea was the winning entry to VW’s “The Fun Theory” competition, where applicants were tasked to design ways to change people’s behavior through fun. This is a brilliantly viral campaign that showcases the fact that advertising is content, and if you make engaging content, people will beat a path to your door to watch it. The “piano stairs” entry alone has amassed over 12 million views.
Of course, rewarding good drivers with cash awards does not help governments rake in quite as much in revenue, but speed cameras are supposed to be about safety and not money, right?