Sites | NeedCom
.... This presentation of panhandler market values invites the rest of us to consider more fully our reactions to these people and the moral and philosophical prejudices that underlie them.
Everybody snickered when Newt Gingrich proposed that homeless people should be given laptop computers. At least then they could access NeedCom and learn how to more effectively separate more prosperous souls from their spare change.
wondering what to get mom for Christmas? How about a Panhandler Gift
Certificate -- it may not be as luxurious as a silk bathrobe or trip
to the spa, but it might just open her mind.
The Internet is technology's golden child, but it hasn't achieved its
legendary potential. Too often the Web is seen only as a convenience
- an easy place to shop, check stock quotes, read newspapers, or chat.
Innovations are emerging, but they need research and development support...
Unique and brilliant, NeedCom explores new paths into the arguments about homelessness and panhandling through this inspired provocation that was underwritten by Web Lab and runs on the PBS site.
New Media Report, August 30, 1999
... As user-generated content becomes more valuable online, editors should consider becoming facilitators, even instigators, of more thoughtful discussion content. Hosted by PBS Online and funded by Web Lab, NeedCom: Market Research for Panhandlers (http://www.pbs.org/weblab/needcom) is a brilliant experiment in moving beyond the pithy poll question or banal "What Do You Think?" plea.
And now for our way-weird market-research category: Rate the pitches
from six panhandlers. And then compare your virtual generosity with
the Web average.
Excerpt: Don't you just hate it when someone on a street corner gives you a lame pitch for spare change? Couldn't they come up with something original? Or at least less offensive? Well now you can do something about it. NeedCom is conducting the first ever panhandling focus group on the Web, and they want your input.... (full article available upon request)
Which panhandler pitch makes you fork over that "spare change?" Take
Public Broadcasting's cybersurvey quiz to find where you're most susceptible.
Francisco Weekly, July 21, 1999
... NeedCom is a stylish new Web site (sleek wintergreen logo in '50s
script, modish black-and-white animated photos, multiple-choice bubbles)
that asks you to rate the approaches of six panhandlers with cybercoin
-- the $0.00 bubble for those you abhor, up to $1 for those you condone.
The panhandlers are real -- the result of countless interviews and hundreds
of hours sitting curbside in New York and San Francisco -- and include
men and women of different ages, races, backgrounds, and mental and
physical constitutions. At the end of the "Panhandling Effectiveness
Survey," folks are invited to give their opinion on a number of topics
pertaining to poverty, charity, panhandling, and work ethics. "Customer"
responses are tallied and categorized for easy reference, as are very
candid panhandler remarks on stench, blindness, hustling, taxes, "workday"
shifts, and gross
Excerpt: Are you more likely to give money to a panhandler holding a sign or
to someone who asks you for money? Would it make a difference if one
were a man and the other were a woman? A member of a minority group?
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