Thursday, 2 August 2018

Like It Or Not,

most villages, towns and cities, 

 have beggars, but this invention tries to get the giver into a kind of debate, by changing the message on the scale,

 passers by are incourage to tip the scale in the direction of their belief, by adding coins to their choice,

 the scale is called the Street Debater, it is a simple tool that acts like a balance scale, attached to the two trays on each side are small chalkboards with the words Yes and No, they serve as the answer to a debatable question that invites passersby to engage with their thought and also their wallets, as coins accumulate, the scale shifts to one side or the other, it’s what Japanese designer Tomo Kihara calls a “playful intervention,” an attempt to break the invisible rules of what we consider normal, the Street Debater offers an alternative to outright begging, 

 Kihara, an interaction designer now based in the Netherlands, conducted a socioeconomic study and found that his Street Debator tool stopped an average of 12.5 people per hour and generated an average of 13.5 pounds per hour in London, presumably tax free, not a bad earner, for sitting around reading a book or working on your laptop at the same time! and here is a thought, you could print cards with this hours debate, have a large 1 hour clock counting down to the end of the hour, imagine two people with opposing views lumping money in as the hour of the debate draws to a close! You can read more about Kihara’s research and what prompted his explorations in this post on Medium,

not only does the tool serve as a dignified way of earning money, it also aims to promote empathy and tolerance in society, although there are only 3 Street Debator kits in action around the world, you can join Kihara in his effort by learning more about the project or purchasing one of the kits to give to somebody in need, if you have a laser cutter at your disposal, Kihara also offers the design as a free download, or if as a beggar you or a friend does not have a laser cutter, you can still uses the time honoured London phrase of, 'Oi, got any loose change Guv?' 

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