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Online labor markets have great potential as platforms for conducting experiments. They provide immediate access to a large and diverse subject pool, and allow researchers to control the experimental context. Online experiments, we show, can be just as valid—both internally and externally—as laboratory and field experiments , while often requiring far less(More)
Online labor markets give people in poor countries direct access to buyers in rich countries. Economic theory and empirical evidence strongly suggest that this kind of access improves human welfare. However, critics claim that abuses are endemic in these markets and that employers exploit unprotected, vulnerable workers. I investigate part of this claim(More)
In recent years, a number of online labor markets have emerged that allow workers from around the world to sell their labor to an equally global pool of buyers. The creators of these markets play the role of labor market intermediary by providing institutional support and remedying informational asymmetries. In this paper, I explore market creators' choices(More)
This paper reports the results of a natural field experiment where workers from a paid crowdsourcing environment self-select into tasks and are presumed to have limited attention. In our experiment, workers labeled any of six pictures from a 2 x 3 grid of thumbnail images. In the absence of any incentives , workers exhibit a strong default bias and tend to(More)
This paper reports the results of a series of field experiments designed to investigate how peer effects operate in a real work setting. Workers were hired from an online labor market to perform an image-labeling task and, in some cases, to evaluate the work product of other workers. These evaluations had financial consequences for both the evaluating(More)
Average public feedback scores given to sellers have increased strongly over time in an online labor market. Changes in marketplace composition or improved seller performance cannot fully explain this trend. We propose that two factors inflated reputations: (1) it costs more to give bad feedback than good feedback and (2) this cost to raters is increasing(More)
Using data from an online labor market, I show that buyers inefficiently pursue oversubscribed sellers. Although oversubscribed sellers are positively selected, this fact alone cannot account for the amount of attention they receive. "Excess" buyer attention is caused by an information asymmetry: buyers do not know seller capacities and cannot condition(More)
Buyers and sellers in markets often signal to inform the other side about their preferences. Both have a mutual incentive to reveal information with respect to horizontal differentiation, but the case of vertical differentiation is more complex: a buyer claiming they place a high value on quality may attract more sellers of the right ``type'' increasing(More)