Thursday, November 17, 2016

Should the toilet seat be left up or down? The public space case

The accepted game theory analysis (…/) on ever lasting men-women argument, whether toilet seat should be left down or not, has a known equilibrium. Men should leave the seat down, to avoid inflicting a conflict upon yourself, with women screaming on men, in case they fail to do so.
However the previous research fails to consider а case of shared in toilet in public space environment. In work space for example, there are multiple men & women, and it is hard to known, who visited the toilet before you. This anonymity allows to avoid the conflict and makes it an optimal strategy to leave the seat the way you had it for yourself.
The printed sign in the picture says in Hebrew: "Please leave the set down". Handwriting adds - "push it down yourself!"


Azar, Ofer H. (2005), “Who Do We Tip and Why? An Empirical Investigation,” Applied Economics, 37(16), 1871-1879
Choi, P. (2002), “Up or down? A male economist’s manifesto on the toilet seat etiquette.” Michigan State Working Paper
Harter, R., (2005), “A game theoretic approach to the toilet seat problem.” Science Creative Quarterly