The Cost Of Free Doughnuts : Planet Money Free is cool, but it can backfire. On today's show, what happens when you take something that's free and give it a price. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.
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The Cost Of Free Doughnuts

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The Cost Of Free Doughnuts

The Cost Of Free Doughnuts

The Cost Of Free Doughnuts

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  • Transcript

U.S. soldiers receive refreshments, including doughnuts, from an American Red Cross clubmobile in London. Soldiers today still resent a Red Cross move to charge for doughnuts. Library of Congress hide caption

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Library of Congress

U.S. soldiers receive refreshments, including doughnuts, from an American Red Cross clubmobile in London. Soldiers today still resent a Red Cross move to charge for doughnuts.

Library of Congress

Note: This episode originally ran in 2012.

If you think about every other price in the world — a dollar, $12.99, a million dollars — free stands out.

Everybody likes free. But free can be dangerous, too. Today's show is about what happens when you take something that was free and you give it a price. That is a highly risky move. And the damage can be enormous.

Free of charge, we bring you the story of the Red Cross, its free doughnuts, and what happened when they suddenly weren't free any more.

Music: "Started Something" and "Just For Fun."

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