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On 6/26/2014, Jeffrey Brown wrote (excerpt):

> 2) Paul B. said, in this thread, that one should make the distinction
> between "easier" and "easy." I agree. Truly, though, one should make a
> distinction based on value (benefit / effort). The immediate benefit of
> learning an auxlang is less than a natlang. Therefore, for an auxlang to
> have the same value to a potential learner, it must be extremely easy to
> learn.

You have a legitimate point regarding what some refer to as the 
cost/benefit ratio, another term for your benefit/effort (with the terms 
reversed). As I pointed out in my essay "Thoughts on IAL Success" 
(online*), and as many others have pointed out, often (apart from 
hobbyists), people expend the effort to learn another language (to 
whatever degree) because they assess that doing so will provide them 
with some benefit justifying the "cost" (effort). So I think there are 
both considerations: cost/benefit and that conIAL X is easiER to learn 
than most natlangs, not that it is "easy" in and of itself.

* http://www.panix.com/~bartlett/thoughts.html

-- 
Paul Bartlett