What happens when actual prisoners play The Prisoner's Dilemma?

Couldn’t some of the effect be attributed to the fact that the prisoners are not going to trust anyone coming in and presenting this situation. They would be completely justified to think something is up and not to trust the test presenters. It becomes a tangled mess with no scientific usefulness. College students on the other hand, are typically sheltered and gullible and would think it totally cool to play at being prisoners and betray each other just for the hell of it because it is all a laugh anyway.

Conclusion: life is more serious for victims of life’s injustices. Who woulda thunk it.

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From what I remember reading, most people will cooperate when given gamed of PD to play. The notable exception is Economics students. To me, this suggests that the societies that people normally live in have developed lots of features to detect and eliminate “always defect” behaviour, and it’s only by rigorous training in sociopathically simplified models that causes people to make the choices that naive game theory suggests.

In short- Nash has a lot to answer for.

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Beyond that, it’s part of the general landscape for most of the demographics that are most likely to be represented in prison.

Ever rub shoulders with the criminally inclined? In my country, snitches are called ‘dogs’ and are regarded with much vehemence by those of a certain class.

Even the cops carry on like that (and particularly so), when it comes to policing police.

This study is worse than useless; just a smart-ass premise played out to a worthless conclusion.

A very important factor for the prisoners dilemma is that there have to be absolutely no consequences to the participants actions other than the payout. If they have to see the people they snitched on afterwards or if others are able to figure out if they snitched, its’s not a real/pure prisoners dilemma.

Yeah, the situation always excludes the paradigm shift. Snitching - word gets around, people figure it out. Maybe within the walls you might secure some safety, but your time is eventually done. And then you get to meet the friends of the person you snitched on.

Let alone the high probability that the interrogators will often overshoot the amplitude of what’s supposed to have happened. Smoked some weed becomes “sold some weed” and so on. They want a glorious finale, not a run of the mill outcome. Which makes it easier for the “prisoner” to not say anything at all.

Well, it can depend on the outcome as well. If you cause, say, a breadwinner with a family to stay penned in for an extra 12 months, the havoc that can wreak will cause long-term memory and disruption.

Go back to live in the same locale, and bar arguments are just that little more likely to fire off into something more dangerous.

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