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What determines the nature of remuneration in Darker than Black?

Is it something ironic? Similar to one of the contractors smoking even though he hates the thought of smoking. Or is it some other way?

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What determines the nature of remuneration in Darker than Black?

Since it's unclear how exactly does one become a contractor, it's also unclear how is his payment determined.

Is it something ironic? Similar to one of the contractors smoking even though he hates the though of smoking.

No, not necessarily. this wiki says:

Remunerations are typically difficult for the Contractor and range in severity from irritating to painful. However, there have been a few contractors who enjoy their remuneration and at least one who uses it in conjunction with his or her own ability.

For example, Bai's (Hei's sister) obeisance was sleeping, which is neither painful, nor shameful/irritating/etc. Another example is April, whos obeisance is alcohol drinking, which she actually enjoys.

However in general it looks like that obeisance is more likely to be unpleasant to the contractor.

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