Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Things undergrads shouldn't be reading

Who knew I'd get an economics lesson in a CNN article titled "Are you afflicted with 'TiVo guilt'?":

"You want to watch TV, and what do you have? You turn on your DVR and you have a homework assignment," says Brad Berens, chief content officer for iMedia Communications, who analyzes how media advances change people's behavior.

"Economists call this 'opportunity costs,' " explains Berens. "You're sitting there and you have to weigh, well, 'I have to watch this thing, because I promised myself when I told TiVo... I want the whole season of that! Go get it! And go get things like it!' And so you've committed to this decision and it's a burden -- suddenly your relaxation has turned into more work."

It gets better:

"With infinite media, you have infinite choices, and therefore you have infinite opportunity costs," he says. "Your satisfaction index of the thing you actually choose can never be equivalent to the infinite opportunity costs, so we're in this position of being behind the cognitive eight-ball all the time."

Wow. That might be the worst sentence written concerning economics that I've read in some time: "With infinite media, you have infinite choices, and therefore you have infinite opportunity costs."

Wow.

You can learn all about Mr. Berens here, though before you head there, give a guess as to the discipline of his graduate study. Not the first guess for me, but it was top three.

2 comments:

The Chosen Rob said...

Hmmmm... psychology seems too easy.

International business? They always seemed like the "Business Lite" majors to me.

I'll go with Social Service, or the equivalent of.

The Chosen Rob said...

"Samsonite.... I was way off!"