[ExI] Young USA men already moving to virtual reality
pharos at gmail.com
Fri Aug 4 13:17:08 UTC 2017
Leisure Luxuries and the Labor Supply of Young Men
Younger men, ages 21 to 30, exhibited larger declines in work hours
over the last fifteen years than older men or women. Over the same
period, time-use data show that younger men distinctly shifted their
leisure to video gaming and other recreational computer activities. We
propose a framework to answer whether improved leisure technology
played a role in reducing younger men's labor supply. The starting
point is a leisure demand system that parallels that often estimated
for consumption expenditures. We show that total leisure demand is
especially sensitive to innovations in leisure luxuries, that is,
activities that display a disproportionate response to changes in
total leisure time. We estimate that gaming/recreational computer use
is distinctly a leisure luxury for younger men. Moreover, we calculate
that innovations to gaming/recreational computing can justify on the
order of half the increase in leisure for younger men over the past
fifteen years, and 23 to 46 percent of their decline in market hours.
Complete Paper here: -
Discussion article here:
So at a time when most of the people looking for jobs find them, why
are so many young men not even looking? One explanation is that they
think there is no hope, but another explanation is that they would
rather be playing a game. Food is cheap; living with your parents is
cheap; computer games are cheap. Why work? Distinguishing the two
hypotheses is not easy, but Prof Aguiar and his colleagues make a good
case that the pull of video games is an important part of the story.
Women and older men — who spend less time playing games — are more
engaged with the labour market.
Then again, good games do bring happiness. Joblessness is usually a
reliable predictor of misery, yet men under 30 are far less likely to
be unhappy than in the early 2000s. The proportion saying they’re
“very happy” or “pretty happy” has risen from 81 to 89 per cent,
almost halving the rate of unhappiness. The reverse is true for men
over 30.Then again, good games do bring happiness. Joblessness is
usually a reliable predictor of misery, yet men under 30 are far less
likely to be unhappy than in the early 2000s. The proportion saying
they’re “very happy” or “pretty happy” has risen from 81 to 89 per
cent, almost halving the rate of unhappiness. The reverse is true for
men over 30.
This is happening even before immersive VR games have come into common use.
The trend should increase as VR becomes irresistible.
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