ADDRESSING CONCERNS AROUND THE USE OF FEEDBACK SYSTEMS
People sometimes have negative expectations and fears in terms of using feedback systems, which has prevented uptake of these systems from becoming more widespread. Some of the elements that concern people is data protection and privacy, as well as their independence, a lack of trust, and technological limitations, and so the number of people using these systems is limited. Young people fear that the systems could be used by their parents to monitor and punish them – which is not an unjustifiable fear. They also consider the monitoring aspect as undermining their newly gained independence through driving, and that their relationship with their parents could suffer. Affordability, however, represents the biggest hurdle. Parents who are concerned for their children’s safety tend to be more prepared to install the necessary devices.
To address these obstacles and tackle people’s concerns around using feedback systems, improving and simplifying the technical requirements for installing and using the systems is recommended. This could include making it possible to operate the systems via an app and making the user interface clear and easy to use. Furthermore, monetary incentives, for example in the form of the aforementioned pay-as-you-drive insurance tariffs, could provide a means of increasing people’s readiness to use these systems.
It is also important to clarify what the role of the parents is, which should be to improve their children’s driving behavior, and not to punish them. Parents, ultimately, also need a motivation to play their part, and they have to be involved in the process in a similar manner to the accompanied driving process. Protecting young car drivers’ data and privacy is of particular importance. The data collection process must be clear and transparent for all: what information is collected and what is it used for? Only necessary, exclusively safety-related data should be allowed to be collected. For example, GPS data should be recorded, but not shared with the young drivers’ parents, as otherwise there is the risk of it being used for monitoring. Another way of making feedback systems mainstream that should not be underestimated is through legislation. This could provide useful framework conditions, for example the mandatory use of feedback systems as part of driver training, during the probationary period, or as part of the Graduated Driver License model.
LOW EFFECTIVENESS OF PUNISHMENTS
There are very few claims in specialist literature about the clear link between feedback and the laws of the psychology of learning on changes to behavior. It is well known that people learn best through success. If a certain behavior is followed by a pleasant consequence, this is called positive reinforcement. If an unpleasant consequence is removed, this is known as negative reinforcement. Both positive and negative reinforcements have both been proven to promote behavior in that they trigger an increase in the frequency of the behavior that preceded the consequence. Positive reinforcement is experienced as a reward, affirmation, or success and triggers positive emotions, such as joy or pride. Negative reinforcement is perceived as relieving, as it brings an end to an unpleasant state, such as fear or boredom. Conversely, the occurrence of undesirable behavior consequences is referred to as a punishment, which reduces the frequency of certain negative behavior and thus the person learns to avoid that behavior.