Free Things or Free Hassle?

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Free Things or Free Hassle?

Nov 16, 2016

Ian Mankoff

Ian Mankoff, a student in Jon Pfeiffer's Fall 2016 Media Law class at Pepperdine University, wrote the following essay in response to the prompt: We frequently hear about people winning a lifetime supply of pizza, or a lifetime supply of shampoo. How do you think having one thing delivered to you, repeatedly, for free might change your life?

It has always been a dream of mine to win something for life. I've always thought that something like that would be incredible and take some major burden out of your life. I always imagined something like free gas for life or free coffee and bagel each morning at Starbucks. Depending on what the product or service you've won for life is, it could change you and your life exponentially. This also could change depending on what that person needs more in their life or enjoys more. In this country anyone would love something like free gas for his or her car for life. That would change their lives forever and allow them to completely budget out their money each month differently. Free gas for life could save you thousands upon thousands of dollars while you live. Also something like coffee or pizza for life would be helpful to almost anyone. This again could potentially save you tons of money and may people love to get pizza and/or coffee often. One thing you need to take into account is what said winner likes. For instance my mom, who is an avid golfer, would love free golf balls for life; while Lane, my brother who loves Chipotle would want burritos for life.

Now I've reached an interesting scenario changer for me personally. What if what I'm winning for life isn't something I use often or ever in my life? Yes it's possible to not want free things, many Americans pass up free or discounted things daily. What I mean by this is if I won a life supply of tampons I could do nothing except sell them, which would be a hassle. In addition to this scenario, another one I would struggle with is free fish or mixed nuts for life. Both of these foods I am severely allergic to and could die if I ingested either of them. Every person has a few of these items or things in their life that they wouldn't need for life or have any use for it in their lives. Depending on who you are and what you've won it might be worse off, but I would safely bet that almost everyone would be happy with anything for free for life.

Ian is a senior at Pepperdine University majoring in Advertising.

Jon Pfeiffer is an experienced entertainment and copyright trial attorney practicing in Santa Monica. Jon is also an adjunct professor at Pepperdine University in Malibu, California where he teaches Media Law. COM 570 covers First Amendment issues as well as copyright, defamation and privacy.

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