The illusion of consensus about EA celebrities 2023-03-17T21:16:24.001Z
BenMillwood's Shortform 2019-08-29T17:31:56.643Z


Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on On what basis did Founder's Pledge disperse $1.6 mil. to Qvist Consulting from its Climate Change Fund? · 2023-03-28T17:10:44.458Z · EA · GW

While I agree it would have been significantly better to send this to the org ahead of time, I think on the margin I really wish we had more random spot-checks and discussions of org decisions, and still prefer seeing a post that puts an accidentally heavy burden on the org than not seeing one at all.

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on Design changes & the community section (Forum update March 2023) · 2023-03-22T09:13:24.182Z · EA · GW

I'm a fan of serif fonts, so I'm a little sad about that change, and a little confused why posts and comments are in a different visual style. I'm definitely no expert on stuff like this, but I'm curious if there's a motivation for that difference.

edit: oh, and it's even different between section headings and post paragraphs, that seems weird to me too, but maybe it's more common than I realized

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on Design changes & the community section (Forum update March 2023) · 2023-03-22T09:09:24.270Z · EA · GW

I feel like regarding the community posts change, this post is saying something like:

  • people like the change because it means they're not spending as much time on posts they don't endorse engaging with,
  • we could be worried that these posts would be neglected now, but actually the amount of time people are spending on these posts has not gone down

Seems like there's some tension between these points! Do you have a theory for what's happening here? Are the changes leading to people engaging in different ways that are better, even though they're not overall less? If so, how is that achieved by what seemed to me like a fairly uniform visibility reduction?

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on BenMillwood's Shortform · 2023-03-19T17:12:24.352Z · EA · GW

thinking about this more, I've started thinking:

  • emotions are useful for rationality
  • the forum should not have a norm against emotional expression

is two separate posts. I'll probably write it as two posts, but feel free to agree/disagree on this comment to signal that you do/don't want two posts. (One good reason to want two posts is if you only want to read one of them.)

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on The illusion of consensus about EA celebrities · 2023-03-19T10:38:12.404Z · EA · GW

I think it's not primarily a question of how much to disagree – as I said, we see plenty of disagreement every day on the forum. The issue I'm trying to address is:

  • with whom we disagree,
  • how visible those disagreements are,

and particularly I'm trying to highlight that many internal disagreements will not be made public. The main epistemic benefit of disagreement is there even in private, but there's a secondary benefit which needs the disagreement to be public, and that's the one I'm trying to address.

To me it seems that just having the debate on <topic> is more interesting than the meta debate of <is org's thinking on topic sloppy>.

The necessity of thinking about the second question is clearest when deciding who to fund, who to work for, who to hire, etc.

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on The illusion of consensus about EA celebrities · 2023-03-19T09:55:22.256Z · EA · GW

Yeah I agree that for many people, not engaging is the right choice, I don't intend to suggest that all or even most technical debates or philosophical discussions happen here, just that keeping a sprinkling of them here helps give a more accurate impression of how these things evolve.

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on The illusion of consensus about EA celebrities · 2023-03-19T09:44:01.453Z · EA · GW

Hmm I find the correlation plausible but I'm not sure I'm moved to act differently by it. I wouldn't guess it's a strong enough effect that all young people need this conversation or all older people don't, so I'm still going to focus on what people say to judge whether they are making this mistake or not.

Also, to the extent that we're worried that the illusion of consensus harms our credibility, that's going to be more of a problem with older people, I expect.

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on BenMillwood's Shortform · 2023-03-17T21:03:00.280Z · EA · GW

I'd like to write something about my skepticism of for-profit models of doing alignment research. I think this is a significant part of why I trust Redwood more than Anthropic or Conjecture.

(This could apply to non-alignment fields as well, but I'm less worried about the downsides of product-focused approaches to (say) animal welfare.)

That said, I would want to search for existing discussion of this before I wade into it.

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on BenMillwood's Shortform · 2023-03-17T20:49:13.886Z · EA · GW

Things I've learned about good mistake culture, no-blame post-mortems, etc. This is pretty standard stuff without a strong EA tilt so I'm not sure it merits a place on the forum, but it's possible I overestimate how widely known it is, and I think it's important in basically any org culture.

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on BenMillwood's Shortform · 2023-03-16T21:55:54.693Z · EA · GW

I was surprised to hear anyone claim this was an applause light. My prediction was that many people would hate this idea, and, well, at time of writing the rep score stands at -2. Sure doesn't seem like I'm getting that much applause :)

I think the optimal number of most bad things is zero, and it's only not zero when there's a tradeoff at play. I think most people will agree in the abstract that there's a tradeoff between stopping bad actors and sometimes punishing the innocent, but they may not concretely be willing to accept some particular costs in the kind of abusive situations we're faced with at the moment. So, were I to write a post about this, it would be trying to encourage people to more seriously engage with flawed systems of abuse prevention, to judge how their flaws compare to the flaws in doing nothing.

I post about the idea here partly to get a sense of whether this unwillingness to compromise rings true for anyone else as a problem we might have in these discussions. So far, it hasn't got a lot of traction, but maybe I'll come back to it if I see more compelling examples in the wild.

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on What is the formal definition of a 'Factory Farm'? · 2023-03-14T15:00:02.838Z · EA · GW

The answers to these questions would have big outcomes on statistics like 'x amount of animals live in factory farms'.

Are you sure? My guess is that it wouldn't change much, that most factory farms are "obviously" factory farms, because there isn't a lot of economic or moral incentive to sit on the borderline.

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on BenMillwood's Shortform · 2023-03-10T13:44:30.453Z · EA · GW

The Optimal Number of Innocent People's Careers Ruined By False Allegations Is Not Zero

(haha just kidding... unless? 🥺)

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on Against EA-Community-Received-Wisdom on Practical Sociological Questions · 2023-03-10T12:58:18.180Z · EA · GW

This is definitely not a precondition for a successful social institution.

I want to differentiate two kinds of success for a social institution:

  1. "reproductive" success, by analogy with evolution: how well the institution establishes and maintains itself as dominant,
  2. success at stated goals: for peer review, success at finding the truth, producing high quality research, etc.

Your argument seems to be (at least in part) that because peer review has achieved success 1, that is strong evidence that it's better than its alternatives at success 2. My argument (in part) is that this is only true if the two kinds of success have some mechanism tying them together. Some example mechanisms could be:

  • the institution achieved reproductive success by means of being pushed really hard by people motivated by the desire to build and maintain a really high quality system,
  • the institution is easy to replace with better systems, and better systems are easy to try, so the fact that it hasn't been replaced must mean better systems are hard to find.

I don't think either of these things are true of peer review. (The second is true of AWS, for example.) So what's the mechanism that established peer review as the consensus system that relates to it being a high quality system?

(I'm not saying I have alternatives, just that "consensus means a thing is good" is only sometimes a good argument.)

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on Against EA-Community-Received-Wisdom on Practical Sociological Questions · 2023-03-09T22:38:48.125Z · EA · GW

Maybe I'm just missing something, but I don't get why EAs have enough standing in philosophy to dispute the experts, but not in sociology. I'm not sure I could reliably predict which other fields you think conventional wisdom is or isn't adequate in.

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on Against EA-Community-Received-Wisdom on Practical Sociological Questions · 2023-03-09T22:31:14.357Z · EA · GW

I upvoted this post and am strongly in favour of more institutional expertise in the community.

However, to take the example of peer review specifically, my sense is that:

  • academics themselves have criticized the peer review system a great deal for various reasons, including predatory journals, incentive problems, publication bias, Why Most Published Research Findings Are False, etc
  • people outside academia, e.g. practitioners in industry, are often pretty sharply skeptical of the usefulness of academic work, or unaware of it entirely,
  • the peer review system didn't obviously arise from a really intentional and thoughtful design effort (though maybe this is just my historical ignorance?), and there are institutional-inertia reasons why it would be hard to replace with something better even once we had a good proposal,
  • at the time the peer review system was developed, an enormous amount of our modern tools for communication and information search, processing, dissemination etc. didn't exist, so it really arose in an environment quite different from the one it's now in.

It feels to me both like the consensus view isn't as strongly in favour of peer review as you suggest, and that there are some structural reasons to think that the dominance of peer review in academic contexts isn't so strong an indicator of its fitness.

I recognise my above criticisms have holes in them, but they seemed worth airing anyway, to at least gesture at why people might end up where they are on this topic.

(Also, obviously I've done nothing to demonstrate that forum posts aren't worse on every axis. I just think that if we're really in the situation of "we should use this moderately terrible system instead of this extremely terrible system", we need to acknowledge that if we're going to get people who can see the terribleness on board.)

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on Suggestion: A workable romantic non-escalation policy for EA community builders · 2023-03-09T10:08:06.125Z · EA · GW

If there were other rules employed that you think helped, feel encouraged to write them up too!

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on Nick Bostrom should step down as Director of FHI · 2023-03-08T17:40:01.600Z · EA · GW

Commenters are fine to object, but to the extent they rely on the question of whether the science is actually discredited or not, I think they should link to an existing discussion of it rather than duplicating it here. The duplication just damages all of:

  • the discussion of the issue here, to the extent it misses things that previous discussions have covered,
  • the discussions that we'd otherwise have linked to, to the extent that people spend effort improving this one rather than that one,
  • any other discussion here, which becomes more difficult to navigate for being mixed in with it.

I'm not trying to prevent discussion, I'm just trying to move and consolidate it.

(But in practice it hasn't been as dominating here as I'd feared, so I'm not going to bang too hard on this drum.)

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on BenMillwood's Shortform · 2023-03-06T21:37:07.660Z · EA · GW

something about the role of emotions in rationality and why the implicit / perceived Forum norm against emotions is unhelpful, or at least not precisely aimed

(there's a lot of nuance here, I'll put it in dw)

edit: I feel like the "notice your confusion" meme is arguably an example of emotional responses providing rational value.

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on Redirecting private foundation grants to effective charities · 2023-03-06T17:42:47.769Z · EA · GW

Longview Philanthropy advises large donors, though I don't know whether they've tried targeting private foundations in the broad, systematic way you suggest.

Effective Giving superficially appears to be doing a similar thing, though I know less about the specifics.

(I'm confused because there used to be two Effective Givings, until one of them renamed to Longview, but it sounds like they both do work like this.)

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on Nick Bostrom should step down as Director of FHI · 2023-03-06T17:26:52.602Z · EA · GW

Rereading it, I feel like almost none of the discussion of the apology in the OP is contingent on whether the research is discredited or not. If you persuade the OP or other people on the forum that the research is not discredited, it will not solve the problems Nick faces as director.

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on Nick Bostrom should step down as Director of FHI · 2023-03-06T13:01:15.986Z · EA · GW

Given the problems that FHI has run into here, do you think it's likely to continue to do good work? My guess is that being able to hire is crucial to that work. Given that, we have to ask ourselves: how long should we wait for Nick to find a resolution to these problems before we conclude that he's unable to solve them? My guess is that two years into a hiring freeze is long enough.

I agree with you that we should update somewhat in the direction of cooperating with universities being difficult and costly. But we should also entertain the hypothesis that it's good to collaborate with universities, but it's not good to ask Nick to be the one who does it.

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on Nick Bostrom should step down as Director of FHI · 2023-03-06T12:18:00.802Z · EA · GW

I think we should link to a discussion of this elsewhere, and not revisit it here, because it seems like a really big topic that could easily take over the entire comment thread and in my view doesn't change the conclusion of the post much (since I think the case for Nick stepping down was already good enough before the apology).

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on Nick Bostrom should step down as Director of FHI · 2023-03-06T12:13:07.915Z · EA · GW

the Apology part makes up most of the post

If you set aside the apology part of the post, and just focus on e.g. the fact that FHI has lost many of their staff and has been unable to hire for two years, how do you feel about Nick as director considering only those facts?

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on Nick Bostrom should step down as Director of FHI · 2023-03-06T12:06:41.016Z · EA · GW

Are conflicts with the philosophy department basically FHI's fault?

I think this is a relevant question, but I don't think it's the whole question (not that you were claiming it was). As an outsider who has heard some stories and has some guesses, I would conjecture that the University is (at least sometimes) unreasonable and bureaucratic, but nevertheless, if you want to be a director of a university-affiliated research group, "managing the relationship with the university, even when they are being unreasonable" is absolutely a core competency of the job, and it's not one that Nick has had much luck with.

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on Nick Bostrom should step down as Director of FHI · 2023-03-06T11:16:54.984Z · EA · GW

If you previously thought he should step down, and then we received no positive news about his suitability for the role, I think it's indefensible to keep him on just to prove a point. It's an important job! We really need to ensure that the person in the role is capable of it! To say that you think that Bostrom is not fit for it and yet should stay in it IMO shows a lack of respect for the actual research work that FHI does.

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on BenMillwood's Shortform · 2023-03-05T20:57:40.184Z · EA · GW

Take a list of desirable qualities of a non-profit board (either Holden's or another that was posted recently) and look at some EA org boards and do some comparison / review their composition and recent activity.

edit: I hear Nick Beckstead has written about this too

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on BenMillwood's Shortform · 2023-03-05T20:30:50.516Z · EA · GW

Disclosure-based regulation (in the SEC style) as a tool either for internal community application or perhaps in AI or biosecurity

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on EA Forum feature suggestion thread · 2023-03-03T22:03:48.018Z · EA · GW

It might be too powerful. In particular, moderators can no longer fully control the content of the post. If you're sneaky, you can even engineer a post that appears differently to different people. I think allowing authors to embed totally arbitrary content is too much freedom.

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on EA Forum feature suggestion thread · 2023-03-03T21:53:48.394Z · EA · GW

Mine does, now, as does at least one other post that didn't before, maybe they're just global now?

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on Forum user manual · 2023-03-03T21:49:21.674Z · EA · GW

I notice my Shortform mysteriously has agreevotes now

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on BenMillwood's Shortform · 2023-03-03T11:32:46.500Z · EA · GW

Something contra "excited altruism": lots of our altruistic opportunities exist because the world sucks and it's ok to feel sad about that and/or let down by people who have failed to address it.

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on BenMillwood's Shortform · 2023-03-03T11:31:15.277Z · EA · GW

Encouraging people to take community health interventions into their own hands. Like, ask what you wish someone in community health would do, and then consider just doing it. With some caveats for unilateralist curse risks.

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on Bad Actors are not the Main Issue in EA Governance · 2023-02-28T11:59:24.856Z · EA · GW

On the whole I think there's less to learn from failures than successes because there are many different ways to get things wrong, so ruling out just one doesn't help you that much. The lesson is only valuable if you would have been dysfunctional in that specific way, and are now able to avoid it.

Working in dysfunctional workplaces can still be educational if:

  • their dysfunction is the biggest / most obvious trap to fall into, and learning to avoid it really does affect your chances of success,
  • they're not dysfunctional in all ways, and have enough other good examples to learn from.

I suspect that in reality a lot of organizations are dysfunctional in ways that aren't useful, e.g. incentive problems. While incentive problems do exist in EA, the incentive landscape is pretty different and I'd guess a lot of the traps don't straightforwardly translate.

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on EA, 30 + 14 Rapes, and My Not-So-Good Experience with EA. · 2023-02-19T12:20:08.457Z · EA · GW

My guess would be that potential financial costs are far from the only problem with being sued for defamation.

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on EA, 30 + 14 Rapes, and My Not-So-Good Experience with EA. · 2023-02-18T18:28:01.940Z · EA · GW

Hi there,

I have been a funder of both CEA and Rethink Priorities in the past, to the tune of low 5-digit sums per year. I'm personally acquainted with Julia, Chana and Peter, and I trust their judgement to an extent, so I tend to believe that they have good reasons for their actions, even if I don't know what they are yet.

Despite this, if the basic claims you're making (as I understand them) are true:

  • you've been instrumental in getting a double-digit number of abusers excluded from the community over the last 6 years or so,
  • this is a relatively uncontroversial claim that Julia et al would straightforwardly agree with,

then I'd be willing to fund you to continue this work, even if CEA didn't want to pay you themselves. Given your credentials and background, I don't know if I could afford you by myself, but if not I imagine there might be other people interested in contributing too.

I don't want to sound like I'm promising anything. I'm generally nervous of being over-eager to fund things without fully understanding the situation and all perspectives on it. I think there's a reasonable chance that when I ask the CH team about this they have very good reasons for why they haven't had a better relationship with you, and perhaps there could be some reason that funding you to continue this work would be counterproductive somehow.

I also understand that the fact you're not paid to do this work is not your only complaint, and maybe not even in your top three complaints. But it is the complaint that seems easiest to address, especially as a comparative outsider.

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on People Will Sometimes Just Lie About You · 2023-02-18T15:52:12.153Z · EA · GW

I feel pretty unsure about this. I think the backlash towards believing women has been somewhat successful in at least leftist spaces in at least getting people to say that treating unverified accusations as credible is good and desirable and important.

In EA, not all of it is a leftist space, and some parts of it have their own backlash against leftist influence. Moreover, in any group, including leftist groups that should in principle be on board with "believe women", the principle and practice don't necessarily line up. I think it's easy to fall into a trap of being outraged at the stories you've been told about women not being believed, but to fail to apply those lessons to cases closer to home where you don't know the truth and you do know the inconvenient details and you have some investment in protecting the status quo.

So, does EA systematically "believe women"? Do we doubt claims of sexual assault with impunity? I think probably anyone who posted doubt on the Forum would get a bunch of pushback. However, that doesn't tell us much about how these claims are handled in private, or what the practical consequences are.

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on Polyamory and dating in the EA community · 2023-02-18T15:09:08.852Z · EA · GW

I'm not going to say any of this is decisively wrong because I'm no kind of authority and relatively new to polyamory myself. But here are a few things that struck me:

I think it's probably true (I'm curious if you agree) that polyamory, all else being equal, might be less stable than monogamy

FWIW this doesn't seem true to me, or at least not obviously true. The flipside is that if you have multiple partners it's comparatively less common for all of your romantic relationships to struggle at once, whereas in monogamy it's obviously pretty easy for that to happen. Having a mixture of people able to meet your needs seems to me like it would be overall stabilizing. The effects mentioned in the passage I'm quoting also seem real, I'm just not sure what effect is strongest.

I think if you don't have the skill of handling interpersonal conflicts well, you just shouldn't be poly

I feel confused about this because it's not like being bad at handling conflict is great in monogamous relationships either. I would guess-agree that polyamory amplifies it, but I think that basically anyone who can't handle conflict well is going to have a rough time of relationships generally, and I'm not sure they should be categorically screened off from polyamory in particular on that basis.

[zero-sum stuff]

My take on this is that everyone has different capacity to meet the needs of others, and everyone has different needs. In polyamory as in monogamy, you might not be able to be everything that your partners want you to be, but whether you have other partners and how you relate to them is only one part of that picture. When we say that people might struggle to have time for multiple relationships, IMO we should really be saying they don't have time for multiple relationshps and their job and their hobbies and whatever else they want to fit into their calendar. Some people struggle with only one relationship! Some people struggle with time management without any relationships! We should also understand that some people feel able to sustain a meaningful relationship on only seeing someone every couple of months (many people feel this way about their family, for example, or old friends), and again it's just about whether what you're able and willing to offer lines up with what they want from you and vice versa.

Anyway, none of this is central to the point of the article, but while we're sharing people's thoughts and impressions, those are mine.

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on BenMillwood's Shortform · 2023-02-15T11:19:09.606Z · EA · GW

very sad that this got downvoted 😭


Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on BenMillwood's Shortform · 2023-02-14T09:29:12.667Z · EA · GW

I think the forum would be better if people didn't get hit so hard by negative feedback, or by people not liking what they have to say. I don't know how to fix this with a post, but at least arguing the case might have some value.

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on EA Forum feature suggestion thread · 2023-02-14T09:20:17.742Z · EA · GW

On mobile, I think there's no way to remove your vote on your own comments. On desktop, I can just click my vote again, but on mobile the normal workflow is to tap to cycle between normal / strong / no vote, and I can't strong upvote my own comments, so I get "stuck" in the cycle.

edit: ok I think you can do it by just going through the cycle quickly enough, but I definitely struggled with this before, perhaps it depends on the latency of your connection to the server...

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on EA Forum feature suggestion thread · 2023-02-14T09:18:55.387Z · EA · GW

Also, probably voting should be prevented on deleted comments.

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on EA Forum feature suggestion thread · 2023-02-14T08:59:52.442Z · EA · GW

When a comment is deleted in such a way that leaves a "comment deleted" block, it has a little [+] to expand the comment, but it doesn't do anything. I would prefer if it wasn't there so I didn't feel like I had to click on it to check if there's something I missed.

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on BenMillwood's Shortform · 2023-02-13T21:01:24.166Z · EA · GW

Edit: This is now The illusion of consensus about EA celebrities

Something to try to dispel the notion that every EA thinker is respected/ thought highly of by every EA community member. Like, you tend to hear strong positive feedback, weak positive feedback, and strong negative feedback, but weak negative feedback is kind of awkward and only comes out sometimes

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on Forum user manual · 2023-02-13T15:30:57.647Z · EA · GW

How come my Shortform (and some other posts, including this one) doesn't allow agree or disagree voting? Is there some way to enable it there?

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on BenMillwood's Shortform · 2023-02-11T13:46:06.358Z · EA · GW

Something about the value of rumours and the whisper network

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on BenMillwood's Shortform · 2023-02-11T13:45:12.507Z · EA · GW

Ideas of posts I could write in comments. Agreevote with things I should write. Don't upvote them unless you think I should have karma just for having the idea; upvote the post when I write it :P

Feel encouraged also to comment with prior art in cases where someone's already written about something.

(some comments are upvoted because I wrote this thread before we had agreevotes on every comment; also I'm removing my own upvotes on these)

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on In (mild) defence of the social/professional overlap in EA · 2023-02-10T09:26:45.577Z · EA · GW

I would say the goal of EA is twofold:

  • Improve the lot of humanity as much as we can given the resources we can gather and are willing to put in,
  • Gather and put in a lot of resources.

In particular, pretty much no-one puts in all their resources, or as much as they can possibly afford. Most EAs are not willing to entirely forego being really happy themselves in the pursuit of a better world.

(There are instrumental reasons why being infinitely self-sacrificing is a bad idea anyway, but even if there weren't, most people just aren't that hardcore about their utilitarianism.)

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on An update to our policies on revealing personal information on the Forum · 2023-02-09T10:05:40.385Z · EA · GW

I'm unenthusiastic about a policy of suppressing unverified rumours. I think the FTX scandal and the recent concerns about sexual harassment are both cases where we could honestly have benefited from more rumours. I know that false accusations can be damaging but I think currently instances of harm from false rumours are outweighed by harm that has gone unaddressed because people feel anxious about speaking up about it.

Any policy in this area should take into account the fact that many bad stories are unverifiable by nature.

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on Karma overrates some topics; resulting issues and potential solutions · 2023-02-07T09:33:28.323Z · EA · GW

FWIW I (as a software developer unaffiliated with the forum) don't expect the technical implementation of this to be difficult, at least not more than, say, the agreevote split.

(Not taking a position on whether the change would be desirable.)

Comment by Ben Millwood (BenMillwood) on EA's weirdness makes it unusually susceptible to bad behavior · 2023-02-06T08:54:08.795Z · EA · GW

Yeah, there are certainly some difficult choices in this domain, but (and I don't think you said otherwise) not all access needs are competing, not all choices are difficult. My guess is that a general push against weirdness would make some potentially-correct pushes on a few important tradeoffs, a few pushes on tradeoffs that serve to make life slightly easier for a few people and substantially harder for others, and also a few totally unnecessary pushes in directions that benefit no-one. We should target the tradeoffs more precisely and carefully.