Why CrowdCast ditched Robin Hansons MSR as the engine of its IAM software

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Dump

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Leslie Fine of CrowdCast:

Chris,

As Emile points out, in 2003 I started experimenting with (and empirically validating) alternatives to the traditional stock-market metaphor that will be more viable in corporate settings. We found the level of confusion and lack of interest in the usual fare led to a death spiral of disuse and inaccuracy. BRAIN was a first stake in the ground in prediction market mechanism design with usability as a fundamental premise.

When I joined Crowdcast (then Xpree) in August of 2008, Mat and the team already recognized the confusion around, and consequent poor adoption of, the MSR mechanism. The number of messages I fielded in my first month here asking me to explain pricing, shorting, how to make money, etc. was astounding. We all knew that we had to start from scratch, and rebuild a mechanism that was easy to use, expressive both in terms of the question one can ask and the message space in which one can answer, and provided a high level of user engagement. We have abandoned the MSR in favor of a new method that users are already finding much simpler and that requires a lower level of participation and sophistication than the usual stock market analogy.

I wish I could go into more detail. However, we need to keep a little bit of a lid on things for our upcoming launch. I can only beg your patience a little while longer, and I hope you will judge our offering worth the wait.

Regards,
Leslie

Nota Bene: IAM = information aggregation mechanism

UPDATE: They are out with their new collective forecasting mechanism.

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WORLDS MOST EXPERIENCED PREDICTION MARKET PRACTITIONER CASTS A DOUBT ON THE VALIDITY OF MSR, IN USE IN MOST PUBLIC PLAY-MONEY PREDICTION EXCHANGES AND IN MOST ENTERPRISE PREDICTION EXCHANGES.

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Nigel Eccles (the CEO of HubDub) and Robin Hanson (the inventor of MSR) have some explaining to make about the extreme zigzagging of the Barack Obama event derivative (in blue on this static compound chart). Look at the right end of the chart.

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UPDATE:

Nigel Eccles:

There was a bug in that chart which is now fixed. However the excess volatility is still there. The problem is that our early markets were created with a liquidity parameter which was too low. That is fixed with more recent markets. However we are also looking at modifying the MSR in some significant ways.

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Previously:

- the latest InTrade predictions

- Emile Servan-Schreiber’-s post on market arbitrage

HOW TO DESTROY INTRADE, TRADESPORTS AND BETFAIR: a betting application for FaceBook

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If US laws were gambling compatible, would a FaceBook betting application solve the chicken-and-egg problem that any brand-new prediction exchange is facing? (Short sellers will come to the exchange only if there are enough backers, who will come only if there is enough liquidity, etc.) Could MySpace, FaceBook and LinkedIn (who have registered people by the millions, already) provide a starting launch for future prediction exchanges?

YooPick for FaceBook

YooPick @ FaceBook

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PS: Yet another hit for Robin Hanson’-s MSR. :-D

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The best presentations from the worlds best conference on enterprise prediction markets -ever

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Awesome slides in bold.

Brought to you by Koleman Strumpf (circa November 2007):

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Henry Berg, Microsoft &lt-slides&gt-
Discussant: Robin Hanson (George Mason Department of Economics) &lt-slides&gt-
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Christina Ann LaComb, GE (The Imagination Market- abstract is free, text is gated) &lt-slides&gt-
Discussant: Marco Ottaviani (Kellogg School of Management, Management and Strategy) &lt-slides&gt-
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Dawn Keller, Best Buy (Best Buy’s TAGTRADE Market) &lt-slides&gt-
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Bo Cowgill, Google (Putting Crowd Wisdom to Work) &lt-slides&gt-
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Jim Lavoie, Co-Founder and CEO, Rite-Solutions &lt-slides&gt-
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David Perry, Co-Founder and President, Consensus Point &lt-slides&gt-
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Mat Fogarty, Founder and CEO, Xpree Inc &lt-slides&gt-

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Tom W. Bell, Chapman University School of Law &lt-slides&gt-

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STRAIGHT FROM THE DOUBLESPEAK DEPARTMENT: NewsFutures CEO Emile Servan-Schreiber, well known to chase tirelessly the Infidels who dare calling prediction markets their damn polling system, is eager to sell the confusion to his clients and whomever would listen.

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Emile’-s made up a phrase that means nothing (except in his fertile imagination), “-a proprietary prediction market variant“- —-sounds like a red herring to me.

Unlike Consensus Point, Inkling Markets and Xpree, NewsFutures is the only prediction market software vendor not to have adopted Robin Hanson’-s MSR —-a simplified trading technology now in use in most enterprise prediction markets.

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