Comment by 96758 on Some thoughts on EA outreach to high schoolers · 2020-09-16T08:17:54.232Z · score: 9 (3 votes) · EA · GW

I agree that this point is worth taking seriously. But isn't the counterfactual simply that the folks are influenced (deliberately, or not) by other sets of ideas/values, and so we might as well make an effort - carefully, thoughtfully, etc - to share 'our' values?

Comment by 96758 on Some thoughts on EA outreach to high schoolers · 2020-09-14T21:41:14.664Z · score: 21 (10 votes) · EA · GW

An interesting, but potentially contentious and risky, approach could be to target a small number of high schools whose pupils have historically tended to wield outsized influence on the world. Certainly in the UK, these schools are pretty well-known. Focussing outreach on them would seem, naively, to be very efficient - but also throw up reputational issues in terms of equity and inclusiveness.

Comment by 96758 on Deliberate Consumption of Emotional Content to Increase Altruistic Motivation · 2020-09-14T21:31:55.416Z · score: 3 (3 votes) · EA · GW

I think that this is a very important, and under-thought-about-in-EA, topic. Visual images have *huge* power, and are proven to be able to mobilise participation and money at scale. For example, their use in charity fundraising. Visual images and video footage seem to have been important in igniting the recent BLM movement in the US. The concept of moral shock has been discussed as a potent driver of participation in social movements.

I suppose one risk is that reliance of visual images might bias us towards beings with whom we have greater gut empathy - eg humans, cute/charismatic animals, etc.

I feel like there is a lot more to be said about this broad topic, and potentially a lot more that the EA community could consider doing in terms of optimising the use of visual images in support of its objectives. Thank you for kicking-off a discussion on it.

Comment by 96758 on Careers (to help animals) in politics, policy, and lobbying · 2020-09-01T09:33:49.918Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · EA · GW

As an aside...(re conservatives, not libertarians) here is Ben Shapiro saying to Jonathan Safran Foer that he thinks that in 100 years people will look back on eating animals as a bad thing - 33 min:

Comment by 96758 on Careers (to help animals) in politics, policy, and lobbying · 2020-08-31T14:42:20.122Z · score: 3 (3 votes) · EA · GW

This is an awesome guide - thank you for writing it, Jamie and Animal Advocacy Careers!

Below are some relevant links - though these are mainly focussed on the UK.

UK political party animal groups:

Other UK political parties may have similar sub-groups, too.

I'm not sure whether similar groups exist in other countries. (If not, maybe setting them up could be a high-leverage intervention?)

There's also a UK political party for animals - the Animal Welfare Party:

General 80k blog post on UK political careers - short and sweet:

A careers guide for policy/politics jobs (mainly relevant to the UK):

Comment by 96758 on When Planning Your Career, Start Early · 2020-08-20T17:42:52.816Z · score: 5 (3 votes) · EA · GW

Applying this logic one stage earlier in the process, one of the key things for EAs who are 15/16/17 to do, in terms of career planning, is to work very hard to try to get into a prestigious University (ie Oxbridge in the UK, Ivy League in the US). Doing so will:

  • help you get a great education
  • surround you with clever, highly-motivated people
  • give you a strong credential which will help you throughout the rest of your career, in terms of getting jobs and maximising your earnings.

It's a peculiarity of the UK education system that in many respects, your *mock A-levels* are plausibly the most high-stakes exams you will ever take, because they influence whether you will get an offer of a place at a top University. Your decisions at age 16/17 can have very profound effects on the rest of your career, and from a lifetime perspective, it's rational to 'frontload' a bunch of effort, focus, and willpower to try to get into a top University.

(It's important to add, of course, that you can enjoy massive impact and success without getting in to one of the most prestigious Universities.)