18 Jun 2005
Reader Noah sends along this link from the Wall Street Journal. Apparently, when players are fined in professional sports for rule-breaking, it's rarely the case that they actually end up paying those fines in full (and in some cases they're fully refunded ... with interest). Between leagues quietly reducing a punishment and agents immediately filing appeals to delay the punishment, it's not surprising that that these perceived penalties don't serve as a deterrent.
It's long been established in the criminology literature that swift punishment is the most effective way to deter crime. So instead of leagues announcing monstrous fines that are first appealed and eventually reduced, maybe an immediate, smaller fine levied with no chance of appeal might help mitigate unwanted behavior. At the very least, it's probably worth a try. (free online w/o subscription)
9 comments, Last at 20 Jun 2005, 3:00pm by Jim A
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