This chapter reviews and attempts to integrate several recent lines of research on information purchase and related phenomena. It also evaluates the main formal models of the process that guided laboratory work, and placed them within a general Brunswikian framework. The chapter also describes some of the main empirical results from laboratory studies, with particular attention to convergences of alternative paradigms. In extending Brunswik's imagery of the lens model to information purchase tasks, the only significant modification is to relax the implicit assumption that cue sets are fixed and complete. Instead, the possibility that the subject can select subsets of the available cues in a given judgment task, acquiring and attending to some and declining or ignoring others is allowed. If a cost of some sort is incurred for each cue the subject acquires, the generic lens model becomes a general conceptual model of information purchase in judgment tasks. The initial purchase decision controls which cues appear in the subject's cue set.
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