Michael I. Norton and Zoe Chance, from Harvard University set out to find if men were telling the truth about buying Playboy for the articles. What they found may surprise you.
Men may well be telling the truth, at least in theory when it comes to buying a Playboy for the articles.
One of the reasons behind the concept of buying for the articles when it comes to racy publications could be the social mores put upon men. Many feel that these magazines may be a bit chancy moral wise so some make excuses for why they pay for the magazines.
The Calgary Herald reports:
"Even before a decision is made . . . we don't want to look at things that will prevent us from doing what we want to do," says Michael I. Norton, an assistant professor at Harvard Business School.
The study consisted of asking male participants to choose between two sports magazines, one with a Top-10 athletes edition and one with a swimsuit edition.
Twenty-three men were asked to complete the experiment as part of a class requirement. The subjects were shown two sports magazines, both that had won the same number of Associated Press Journalism Awards.
The magazines were manipulated so that one had a higher number of sports covered per issue (9 vs. 6), and the other had a lower average of feature articles (12 vs. 19).
The magazine editions were either a Swimsuit Edition or a “Year’s Top 10 Athletes.”
Half of each edition was altered to reflect the number of feature articles and covered sports.
The researchers expected the subjects to select the Swimsuit Issue regardless of the content and then justify their actions.
The subjects examined the descriptions of the magazine and then circled the one they would choice and ranking the criteria of issue length, awards, number of special issues, average number of articles and "other."
Overall the subjects picked the Swimsuit Issue regardless of other variables. When it came to the higher number of articles 92% of participants choice the Swimsuit Issue compared to 46% who went for the more articles when it came to the other issue.
More importantly to the researchers was the inflated value of those articles when it came to the Swimsuit Issue. When the other issue was in play, the number of articles was a factor for 36% of the subjects. That changed dramatically when the magazine was featuring babes in bikinis, the same articles were then the main reason 83% of the subjects wanted that issue.
In the end, yes men really do mean it when they say they buy a girly magazine for the articles but those bikinis may give them the underlying reason for wanting to read more.