How to leverage unpredictability to motivate users?

One of the principles of gamification is unpredictability and curiosity. “Because you don’t know what’s going to happen next, you’re always thinking about it.” – Yu-kai Chou

This principle is heavily exploited in the gambling industry.

It could also be put to some good use – by getting people to obey the speed limit.

In 2011, Stockholm experimented with the concept of Speed Camera Lottery.

Whenever a car passed by a Speed Camera Lottery, it snapped a photo and measured its speed. If the driver was above the set speed limit, a fine was imposed. Pretty straightforward.

But suppose you’re passing by this Speed Camera Lottery and you’re within the speed limit, it’ll now enter you into a lottery – where you have a chance to win some money from those who are fined. Genius.

Next time, when you pass by this camera, you would think “Maybe this time I’ll win the lottery” and slow down.

This experiment brought the entire community together to play a fun game. Sweden was eager put it to test and successfully reduced the speed of passing cars by 20%.

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