In the eyes of a so-called first world citizen, a micro-payment of a few cents may not seem to be much different than nothing at all – he or she may rather play a game instead. For those without that luxury, these tasks are quite literally their jobs.  Von Ahn struggles not with the ethical or moral implications of his philosophy (there are none, it appears) nor with questions of what is taken, who has the advantage or where the profit ends up, but instead with his own task: because “it’s so devilishly hard to make things fun.” The whole discourse sings a familiar refrain. Again, Thompson:
“The stakes are high. Every day, thousands of spam blogs are created that threaten to corrupt search results, and companies like Ticketmaster lose consumer confidence when scalper-bots jump the queue for tickets.”
reCAPTCHA does not just protect the internet, but provides a public service at the same time. Von Ahn’s false equivalency, dangerous already, is more even more sinister in light of its simplicity: “Every time somebody does one, they basically waste 10 seconds of their life...so the question is, can we get you to do work for those 10 seconds?” Time wasted and work are interchangeable when placed on the same plane. Further still, this is not just any time, but your life-time. For flourish, why not add an existential imperative – you would not throw away your life, so why waste any time? Why let anything go to waste? You are only here for so long.