.impact updates 3 of 3: Impact Missions, peer-to-peer fundraisers, matching donationspost by georgie_mallett · 2016-11-15T18:59:12.169Z · score: 4 (6 votes) · EA · GW · Legacy · 12 comments
Considering the current trajectory of the EA community, we identified a number of key conclusions that we believe .impact is well-placed to address:
As the community grows, it’ll likely become increasingly important to communicate EA ideas clearly and avoid inaccurate messaging.
Community builders (local groups included) would benefit from a greater variety of resources and a higher standard in terms of shareability, digestibility and appeal.
The success of local groups is highly dependent on the appeal of the group leader.
The median EA donation ($330) was pretty low. There could be various reasons for this, but we can only really pin down an explanation when .impact conduct the next EA Survey. If EAs think they should donate more but don’t, there could be a fundamental disconnect between belief and action. Do we still need new incentives or additional prompting to donate?
Community Building and Coordination
Many EAs have come across the movement via articles, but those that would be put off by lengthy text have few alternative opportunities to encounter effective altruism. The instances where we have branched out into various media and outreach have proved valuable in driving more people towards the community, e.g. Peter Singer’s TED talk, the Sam Harris podcast with Will MacAskill, EAG, the pledge drive and so on.
There is an abundance of existing content that .impact intends to refine into concise, enjoyable forms of media, making the information clearer whilst being careful to not oversimplify it. We will focus on making resources that allow the community to easily share EA ideas via engaging and digestible material.
These resources will also aid the Local EA Network. With LEAN, we have seen that a local group is more likely to succeed with a charismatic group leader. However, this combination of charisma, enthusiasm about EA, and willingness to put in the work, is scarce. LEAN, therefore, gives guidance on how to lead, what kind of events to have, and how to have an impact, so the (sustained) success of a group is no longer solely dependent on an individual’s character. In other words, we give them the training to succeed. Likewise, videos or other resources that introduce EA in a fun and appealing way can function as a supplement where charisma is lacking.
As the community grows, it’s becoming more important to have a clear message and avoid miscommunication. For example, we need to ensure that group leaders are up to speed on the key concepts of EA, and that it’s easy to learn the necessary points via engaging resources:
Engaging, digestible videos: explaining key concepts, transferring charisma, circumventing jargon, and shortening the learning experience without oversimplifying.
Podcasts or interviews: this may involve reaching out to existing popular podcasts or creating our own, depending on further research.
Infographics, memes, handouts: creating explanatory resources for newcomers (particularly useful for LEAN groups to distribute, and something they requested in our LEAN survey).
Resources for groups to measure impact: feedback forms, tips on useful metrics and so on.
An interactive EA flowchart to navigate the various resources, so users can direct their own experience of learning about EA; the learning experience would be modifiable by time and form (3-second meme, 3-minute video, 10 minute article etc.) and by intention (introductory learning, short action, in-depth learning, long-term commitment, etc); this also serves as a means of determining which resources are most popular with particular audiences via behavioural analytics.
The interactive EA flowchart is a good example of our ethos: we want to create a fun learning experience that appeals to a variety of users and eases the process of communicating about EA, while internally collecting data from behavioural analytics, which can influence our future strategy.
Our move to create and distribute high-quality resources represents a long-term approach to a) involve more people in the community and b) strengthen the commitment of existing community members.
Impact Missions, Peer-to-Peer Fundraising and Matching Donations
As a means of increasing and coordinating the impact of the EA community, we will be leading Impact Missions throughout the year.
These Impact Missions could take the form of anything from everyone working together to change a particular policy, to coordinating an effort to translate EA materials into non-English languages. The intention is to make waves through a concentrated, coordinated effort. Our peer-to-peer fundraisers are one iteration of this.
As part of our immediate impact, .impact is taking over a project that was previously (very successfully) run by Charity Science: peer-to-peer fundraising campaigns. There are two main reasons for this:
.impact has great potential to develop these fundraising activities, particularly given that we support ~300 Local Groups and a growing network of SHIC Clubs.
Charity Science has decided to focus on their direct poverty project, Charity Science Health.
We intend to provide platforms for fundraising as well as coming up with fun and innovative campaigns. We will encourage both LEAN and SHIC groups to take part, thereby:
Increasing people’s commitment to their respective local groups and EA as a whole.
Creating an opportunity to bond as a group, and to learn from other EA groups.
Giving groups an active dimension, and providing an alternative to lecture/discussion meetups.
Drawing in a new crowd; a proportion of whom may only take part in the fundraiser, while some will likely go on to further engage with EA.
Creating at least one clear metric by which groups can measure their success, and hopefully nudging them towards more data collection (something we want to encourage regardless).
Our first fundraiser and Impact Mission will be a peer-to-peer Winter fundraiser, ‘Season’s Givings’. We are currently gathering matching funds for this project, and are seeking people who have (or would like) experience with fundraising; please do contact us if you’re able to help us make progress with either of these goals.
Donate to .impact
We are currently fundraising for our 2017 operations. If you are interested in helping .impact continue and scale, please get in touch.
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