Common Tragedies

Thoughts on Environmental Economics

I talk good

Posted by Daniel Hall on October 20, 2007

From the inbox:

This website,, tests your vocabulary and then donates 10 grains of rice towards world hunger for every word you get right.

I got to 690 grains and couldn’t figure out if there is any end point. Can you just keep ‘playing’ forever and donating rice? The website makes it even more enticing by defining a vocab ‘level’ for you that moves up or down as you get words right or wrong. This makes it more like a personal contest — you can play either to donate rice, or to try to reach a new high vocab level.

I am tempted to hold a Common Tragedies competition to see who can donate the most grains and who can reach the highest vocab level, but… Where are they sourcing this rice from? How is it grown? Most worryingly, am I putting some rice farmer in the aid-receiving country out of business because I correctly guessed the meaning of “adumbration”?

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