Which is better for animal welfare, terraforming planets or space habitats? And by how much? 2020-10-17T21:49:51.311Z · score: 19 (11 votes)
DonyChristie's Shortform 2020-08-22T17:49:36.928Z · score: 4 (1 votes)
What is the increase in expected value of effective altruist Wayne Hsiung being mayor of Berkeley instead of its current incumbent? 2020-08-07T01:50:34.172Z · score: 2 (16 votes)
Will Three Gorges Dam Collapse And Kill Millions? 2020-07-26T02:43:40.087Z · score: 76 (38 votes)
How would you advise someone decide between different biosecurity interventions? 2020-03-30T17:05:26.161Z · score: 11 (4 votes)
What are people's objections to earning-to-give? 2019-04-13T20:16:43.283Z · score: 24 (14 votes)
What are ways to get more biologists into EA? 2019-01-11T21:06:01.945Z · score: 17 (9 votes)
We Could Move $80 Million to Effective Charities, Pineapples Included 2017-12-14T04:40:26.648Z · score: 17 (17 votes)


Comment by donychristie on What is the increase in expected value of effective altruist Wayne Hsiung being mayor of Berkeley instead of its current incumbent? · 2020-10-10T17:57:48.081Z · score: 10 (5 votes) · EA · GW

For all of the new commenters: it would have been more valuable to comment when I asked this question, as I was considering trying to coordinate EAs using an assurance contract to provide enough volunteers to help his campaign win. Given how the comments turned out, I decided it was not worth pursuing and therefore assume the Wayne campaign will lose with 50-80% probability, moreso because I didn't think EAs would buy-in (for better or worse) than due to having a sense of how good Wayne's mayorship would actually be for the world on the object-level.

(Since basically no one gave a good, quantitative answer to the question beyond their own social-emotional reasoning.)

So I've moved on. In general, dialogue about an election is worth much less in expectation a couple weeks out from the election than it is in advance.

Comment by donychristie on What is the increase in expected value of effective altruist Wayne Hsiung being mayor of Berkeley instead of its current incumbent? · 2020-10-10T17:55:26.049Z · score: 5 (3 votes) · EA · GW

Thank you for this answer! I liked how reflectively balanced it was on the different considerations and how it tracked the object-level sentient beings at stake.

Comment by donychristie on DonyChristie's Shortform · 2020-08-25T20:43:25.086Z · score: 9 (4 votes) · EA · GW

I don't have much slack to respond given I don't enjoy internet arguments, but if you think about the associated reference class of situations, you might note that a common problem is a lack of self-awareness of there being a problem. This is not the case with this dialogue, which should allay your worry somewhat.

The main point here, which this is vagueposting about, is that people on here will dismiss things rather quickly especially if it's a dismissal by someone with a lot of status, in a pile-on way without much overt reflection by the people who upvote such comments. I concluded from seeing this several times that at some point this will happen with a project of mine, and that I should be ok with this world, because this is not a location in which to get good project feedback as far as I can tell. The real risk here I am facing is that I would be dissuaded from the highest-impact projects by people who only believe in things vetted by a lot of academic-style reasoning and evidence that makes legible sense, at the cost of not being able to exploit secrets in the Thielian sense.

Comment by donychristie on DonyChristie's Shortform · 2020-08-25T20:41:30.813Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · EA · GW

This is also valid! :)

Comment by donychristie on DonyChristie's Shortform · 2020-08-22T17:49:46.396Z · score: 2 (10 votes) · EA · GW

Someday, someone is going to eviscerate me on this forum, and I'm not sure how to feel about that. The prospect feels bad. I tentatively think I should just continue diving into not giving a fuck and inspire others similarly since one of my comparative advantages is that my social capital is not primarily tied in with fragile appearance-keeping for employment purposes. But it does mean I should not rely on my social capital with Ra-infested EA orgs.

I'm registering now that if you snipe me on here, I'm not gonna defensively respond. I'm not going to provide 20 citations on why I think I'm right. In fact, I'm going to double down on whatever it is I'm doing, because I anticipate in advance that the expected disvalue of discouraging myself due to really poor feedback on here is greater than the expected disvalue of unilaterally continuing something the people with Oxford PhDs think is bad.

Comment by donychristie on Should we think more about EA dating? · 2020-07-26T23:30:34.582Z · score: 6 (7 votes) · EA · GW


Addition: I think this is a serious need for many people and it would save a lot of time and energy to make the process more effective. I think worries about cultishness are quite overblown; there are dating sites for various kinds of groups. Solutions could look like either intra-EA dating or a consultancy solving the dating problems for particular EAs, matchmaking them with people outside the movement. Working on this would also be a great way to create a startup that could scale to millions of customers (see also Roam, which started out catering to individual EAs and is now a fast-growing success).

Comment by donychristie on Against opposing SJ activism/cancellations · 2020-06-19T03:29:48.032Z · score: 9 (7 votes) · EA · GW

Coordination infrastructure that would allow sane people to defuse runaway information cascades in generality would be very valuable to discover, unless physics doesn't allow it.

Can any historically and/or sociologically familiar people comment as to the ability for the witch hunts to have been stopped by counterfactually motivated and capable parties, and what order of magnitude of motivation and capability might have stopped it?

Comment by donychristie on What are some software development needs in EA causes? · 2020-03-09T05:39:59.154Z · score: 3 (3 votes) · EA · GW

The Covid-19 Risk Assessment app is looking for programmers! (Note, that website may need updating with the latest progress).

You can email them at

Comment by donychristie on Who in EA enjoys managing people? · 2019-04-13T01:16:19.000Z · score: 10 (4 votes) · EA · GW

I enjoy organizing events and coordinating new online groups and projects, as well as coaching people, but am rather unskilled at these things at the moment. I expect management to ever-increasingly be an important hat of mine in my future. I would highly welcome marginal domain-specific mentorship here!

(coughcough, to the person reading this who knows something about these things) :)

Comment by donychristie on Mental support · 2019-03-28T04:28:32.281Z · score: 9 (5 votes) · EA · GW

Because people who need help the most often don't have the money?

Comment by donychristie on Should there be an EA crowdfunding platform? · 2018-05-04T04:36:18.385Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · EA · GW

Someone just try and build something.

Comment by donychristie on 69 things that might be pretty effective to fund · 2018-01-22T05:19:13.652Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · EA · GW

Global catastrophic risks: North Korea: Fund ‘Flash Drives for freedom’, which smuggles flash drives with unbiased information into North Korea. Such an approach was implicitly endorsed in November by Thae Yong-ho, once number two at North Korea’s London embassy and now defector. There’s also academic analysis of this isolation being one of the reasons for the lack of uprising in North Korea.

Any thoughts on the expected value of this in particular? It says $1 ~ 1 flash drive.

Comment by DonyChristie on [deleted post] 2018-01-20T23:32:10.596Z

The political mobilization you are prematurely demanding to rectify the laundry list of concerns you present is first contingent on individuals like myself being persuaded by the veracity of your claims, which this post makes a lot of, the conjunction of which is exceedingly improbable. It would be easier for me to be persuaded if one concrete opportunity for intervention was first expounded on, such as this pipeline (or whichever is the best specific intervention here), its cost-effectiveness in creating QALYs (or your preferred measure), and how the resulting expected output of our contributions would compare to other potential effective interventions in a similar class of human-concernedness such as ALLFED, AMF, or biosecurity, or even more dissimilar ones like AGI alignment, animal welfare, etc, rather than presenting shock that we do not hold the same inside view on what is literally the most important thing to do with one's resources.

This recently made guide on introducing new interventions to aspiring effective altruists, if followed, will help achieve that. You can also post any calculations in this group and receive feedback. Effective Environmentalism might interest you as well. :)

Comment by donychristie on How to get a new cause into EA · 2018-01-10T12:18:59.993Z · score: 11 (14 votes) · EA · GW

Effective altruism has had three main direct broad causes (global poverty, animal rights, and far future), for quite some time.

The whole concept of EA having specific recognizable compartmentalized cause areas and charities associated with it is bankrupt and should be zapped, because it invites stagnation as founder effects entrench further every time a newcomer joins and devotes mindshare to signalling ritual adherence to the narrative of different finite tribal Houses to join and build alliances between or cannibalize, crowding out new classes of intervention and eclipsing the prerogative to optimize everything as a whole without all these distinctions. "Oh, I'm an (animal, poverty, AI) person! X-risk aversion!"

"Effective altruism" in itself should be a scaleable cause-neutral methodology de-identified from its extensional recommendations. It should stop reinforcing these arbitrary divisions as though they were somehow sancrosanct. The task is harder when people and organizations ostensibly about advancing that methodology settle into the same buildings and object-level positions, or when charity evaluators do not even strive for cause-neutrality in their consumer offerings. Not saying those can't be net-goods, but the effects on homogenization, centralization, and bias all restrict the purview of Effective Altruism.

I have often heard people worry that it’s too hard for a new cause to be accepted by the effective altruism movement.

Everyone here knows there are new causes and wants to accept them, but they don't know that everyone knows there are new causes, etc, a common-knowledge problem. They're waiting for chosen ones to update the leaderboard.

If the tribally-approved list were opened it would quickly spiral out of working memory bounds. This is a difficult problem to work with but not impossible. Let's make the list and put it somewhere prominent for salient access.

Anyway, here is an experimental Facebook group explicitly for initial cause proposal and analysis. Join if you're interested in doing these!

Comment by donychristie on Donation Plans for 2017 · 2018-01-08T05:27:06.844Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · EA · GW

For more speculative things, we want to put part of the money towards a project that a friend we know through the Effective Altruism movement is starting. In general I think this is a good way for people to get funding for early stage projects, presenting their case to people who know them and have a good sense of how to evaluate their plans.

What is the project (at the finest granularity of detail you are comfortable disclosing)?

Comment by donychristie on Viewing Effective Altruism as a System · 2018-01-08T05:22:33.422Z · score: 4 (4 votes) · EA · GW

Yes, fortify health.

Comment by donychristie on We Could Move $80 Million to Effective Charities, Pineapples Included · 2017-12-14T21:09:54.558Z · score: 6 (6 votes) · EA · GW

Keep in mind that soliciting upvotes for a comment is explicitly against Reddit rules. I understand if you think that the stakes of this situation are more important than these rules, but be sure you are consciously aware of the judgment you have made.

Oh dear! No, I didn't explicitly realize this beyond passing thoughts. In retrospect, I'm confused why this wasn't cached in my mind as being against reddiquette. I should eat my own dogfood regarding brigading. I edited it so it's not soliciting. Let me know here or privately if there are any further fixes I should make to the post (i.e. if I should just remove the links to the known EA comments).

Comment by donychristie on Mental Health Shallow Review · 2017-11-27T09:48:25.434Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · EA · GW

Did you look into coherence therapy or other modalities that use memory reconsolidation? It is theoretically more potent than CBT.

Comment by DonyChristie on [deleted post] 2017-11-11T23:31:32.675Z

Having now installed the userstyles, in order to unblind (and re-blind) myself I need to press the Stylish icon and press 'Deactivate' on the script? This might be a trivial inconvenience.

Comment by donychristie on Introducing Canada’s first political advocacy group on AI Safety and Technological Unemployment · 2017-10-31T17:49:08.848Z · score: 12 (12 votes) · EA · GW

To what extent have you (whoever's in charge of CHS) talked with the relevant AI Safety organizations and people?

To what extent have you researched the technical and strategic issues, respectively?

What is CHS's comparative advantage in political mobilization and advocacy?

What do you think the risks are to political mobilization and advocacy, and how do you plan on mitigating them?

If CHS turned out to be net harmful rather than net good - what process would discover that, and what would the result be?

Comment by donychristie on Should we be spending no less on alternate foods than AI now? · 2017-10-30T19:20:37.069Z · score: 4 (4 votes) · EA · GW

Truly one of the most satiating interventions on the menu of causes!

Could you go more into the full list of what the food alternatives look like, and how tractable each of them are?

Comment by donychristie on Introducing fortify hEAlth: an EA-aligned charity startup · 2017-10-28T01:42:18.124Z · score: 4 (4 votes) · EA · GW

That is awesome and exciting!

What made you decide to go down this path? What decision-making procedure was used? How would you advise other people determine whether they are a fit for charity entrepreneurship?

How do you plan on overcoming the lack of expertise? How does the reference class of nonprofit startups founded by non-experts compare to the reference class of nonprofit startups founded by experts?

fortify hEAlth

Is this the actual name? I personally think it's cute, but it might be confusing to those not familiar with the acronym.

I think what you're doing could be very high-impact compared to the counterfactual; indeed, it may be outright heroic. ^_^

Comment by donychristie on Why & How to Make Progress on Diversity & Inclusion in EA · 2017-10-26T21:56:06.276Z · score: 4 (6 votes) · EA · GW

I second most of these concerns.

Does this not risk diluting EA into just another ineffective community.

The core of EA is cause-neutral good-maximization. The more we cater to people who cannot switch their chosen object-level intervention, the less ability the movement will have to coordinate and switch tracks. They will become offended by suggestions that their chosen intervention is not the best one. As it is I wish more people challenged how I prioritize things, but they probably don't for fear of offending others as a general policy.

You say that suing the term "AI" without explanation is too much jargon. Is that really a reasonable standard? AI is not an obscure term. If you want us to avoid the term "AI" your standards of accessibility seem rather extreme.

I am in favor of non-dumbed-down language as it creates an added constraint in how I can communicate when I have to keep running a check on whether a person understands a concept I am referring to. I do agree that jargon generation is sometimes fueled by the desire for weird neologisms moreso than the desire to increase clarity.

You claim we should focus on making altruistic people effective instead of effective people altruistic.

I once observed: "Effectiveness without altruism is lame; altruism without effectiveness is blind." 'Effectiveness' seems to load most of the Stuff that is needed; to Actually Do Good Things requires more of the Actually than the Good. It seems that people caring about others takes less skill than being able to accomplish consequential things. I am open to persuasion otherwise; I've experienced most people as more apathetic and nonchalant about the fate of the world, an enormous hindrance to being interested in effective altruism.

Comment by donychristie on Why & How to Make Progress on Diversity & Inclusion in EA · 2017-10-26T21:17:21.185Z · score: 23 (25 votes) · EA · GW

Discussion about inclusivity is really conspicuous by it's absence within EA. It's honeslty really weird we barely talk about it.

Are you sure? Here are some previous discussions (most of which were linked in the article above):

I recall more discussions elsewhere in comments. Admittedly this is over several years. What would not barely talking about it look like, if not that?

Comment by donychristie on Paper Ballots in the 2020 US Election · 2017-08-06T16:10:35.591Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · EA · GW

It's always great to see a new cause analysis! It would be cool to see some math of the utility/importance of this (you may know Guesstimate is a great tool for this :D), and I echo the desire to see tractable steps and an analysis of what effects the intervention(s) could have. I'm also curious where you think most of the disutility from electronic ballots comes from: the candidate that is elected or the perception that the election was hacked? If the former, I'd guess that many people here including me flag an intuitive penalty on cause areas/interventions that involve partisan politics due to its zero-sum, man vs. man, mindkilling nature. It seems likely that politics will naturally try to butt its head into our business and absorb attention, more than it deserves.

Here is a site dedicated to this. Try contacting them if you desire to research the subject further!

Comment by donychristie on Blood Donation: (Generally) Not That Effective on the Margin · 2017-08-06T15:16:42.563Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · EA · GW

I'm curious what exactly you mean by regular morals. I try (and fail) to not separate my life into separate magisteria but rather seeing every thing as making tradeoffs with every other thing, and pointing my life in the direction of the path that has the most global impact. I see EA as being regular morality, but extended with better tools that attempt to engage the full scope of the world. It seems like such a demarcation between incommensurable moral domains as you appear to be arguing for can allow a person to defend any status quo in their altruism rather than critically examining whether their actions are doing the most good they can. In the case of blood, perhaps you're talking about the fuzzies budget instead of the utilons? Perhaps your position is something like 'Regular morals are the set of actions that, if upheld by a majority of people, will not lead to society collapsing and due to anthropics I should not defect from my commitment to prevent society from collapsing. Blood donation is one of these actions', or this post?

Comment by DonyChristie on [deleted post] 2017-07-11T20:12:32.665Z

I'm interested to know whether Antigravity investments is really needed when EAs have the option of using the existing investment advice that's out there.

Trivial inconveniences.

Comment by donychristie on Getting to the Mainstream · 2017-07-02T23:22:45.571Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · EA · GW

What empirical tests can we make to measure which approach is more effective? What predictions can be made in advance of those tests?

Comment by donychristie on 2017 LEAN Statement · 2017-06-28T22:31:36.602Z · score: 3 (3 votes) · EA · GW

Local group seeding and activation.

Thanks for this link. I may have raised this in a private channel, but I want to take the time to point out that based on anecdotal experience, I think LEAN & CEA shouldn't be seeding groups without taking the time to make sure the groups are mentored, managed by motivated individual(s), and grown to sustainability. I found my local group last year and it was essentially dilapidated. I felt a responsibility to run it but was mostly unsuccessful in establishing contact to obtain help managing it until some time in 2017. I'm predicting these kinds of problems will diminish at least somewhat now that LEAN & Rethink have full-time staff, the Mentoring program, more group calls, etc. :)

Comment by donychristie on Upcoming AMA with Luke Muehlhauser on consciousness and moral patienthood (June 28, starting 9am Pacific) · 2017-06-22T16:36:57.769Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · EA · GW

Be the change you want to see in this world. You are clearly motivated and knowledgeable about the matter enough to try emailing some neuroscientists about the matter. :)

Comment by donychristie on Note: Jeff Bezos posted on Twitter today asking for philanthropy ideas · 2017-06-17T01:24:45.832Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · EA · GW

How can we further coordinate our action on this? Reward people who tweet?

Comment by donychristie on Discussion: Adding New Funds to EA Funds · 2017-06-02T19:51:46.394Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · EA · GW

or we could add a long-term future fund that focused on areas other than AI-Safety.

+1 differentiation. A Fund specifically for AI Safety would probably have demand - I'd donate. Other Funds for other specific GCRs could be created if there's enough demand too.

A mild consideration against would be if there are funding opportunities in the Long Term Future area that would benefit both AI Safety and the other GCRs, such as the cross-disciplinary Global Catastrophic Risks Institute, and splitting would make it harder for these to be funded, maybe?

Comment by donychristie on Fact checking comparison between trachoma surgeries and guide dogs · 2017-05-11T14:44:34.500Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · EA · GW

Overstatement seems to be selected for when 1) evaluators like Givewell are deferred-to rather than questioned, 2) you want to market that Faithful Deferrence to others.

Comment by donychristie on Why you should consider going to EA Global · 2017-05-11T00:02:49.284Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · EA · GW

One, last thing that was emphasised multiple times, was the value of asking. Most of us still don’t do it enough. If one doesn’t understand something, if we don’t know where to start, if we want people to support us - there’s one simple trick: just ask. We tend to feel like there is some social cost to asking but simply asking can provide extremely valuable support and only has downsides if we do it too often. So far, most of us don’t do it enough.

Great point! Relatedly, for next EAG I want to have a small set of questions to ask people (last time it was "What do you think of insect suffering?"). I would highly recommend others come in with thought-provoking questions they want answered. Brainstorming:

  1. What is one trait/idea/action/ you wished the EA community had/understood/took? (or insert "people" for "EA community)
  2. What is one book you would recommend and why?
  3. Takes out $5 Where should I donate this?
  4. What do you need help with in your life?
  5. What are you most uncertain about?
  6. What would make you change your cause prioritization?
  7. Who do you most look up to?

Warning: At EAG Berkeley at least, not everyone you meet will be able to answer all of these questions because they're newer to the movement - adapt accordingly.

Perhaps print off some business cards (even crude, informal ones), with whatever information you wish to impart to people - contact or otherwise.

Try to do a summary of the day before you go to sleep (or just the trip). I made a post on Facebook and tagged some of the people I met (you will have to friend them first for the tag).

Any other ideas? :-)

Comment by donychristie on Where should anti-paternalists donate? · 2017-05-07T01:30:31.583Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · EA · GW

'Do No Harm - on Problem Solving and Design' talks about fixer solutions vs. solver solutions. Its key points:

  • When solving a problem, are you looking for a fix or are you looking for the cause?
  • For a complex system to be resilient, it must (in any practical sense) be comprised of a collection of simpler, resilient parts.
  • The aim of a resilient part is to normalize (make consistent) the things that matter, and to minimize (dampen or hide) the things that don't.
  • If you can't solve an existing problem, how do you know you aren't causing more?
  • Resilience invariably relies upon feedback loops, and so the variables involved must be free to move through some critical range or the feedback is broken and the resilience is lost.

Its concluding paragraph:

The bottom line is: there is no escaping the need to make best effort to understand the whys and wherefores. To skip this and go straight for the fix is not humbly admitting the system is too complex to understand, it is arrogantly assuming we understand it well enough to fix it without breaking it. The humble thing to do is less, not more--to respect the difficulty in keeping any complex system stable, and the degree to which doing so relies upon a best effort by, and freedom of, each component to self-regulate.

Highly recommended read! :D

Comment by donychristie on The Life You Can Save's 2016 Annual Report · 2017-05-02T07:00:19.891Z · score: 3 (3 votes) · EA · GW

The Life You Can Save should become cause-neutral and recommend effective interventions that are from cause areas other than global poverty (e.g. animal welfare charities like The Humane League, or global catastrophic risk charities like The Ploughshares Fund).


Comment by donychristie on Update on Effective Altruism Funds · 2017-04-24T21:38:50.667Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · EA · GW

Allocating grants according to a ranked preference vote of an arbitrary amount of people (and having them write up their arguments); what is the optimal number here? Where is the inflection point where adding more people decreases the quality of the grants?

On tertiary reading I somewhat misconstrued "three fund managers" as "three fund managers per fund" rather than "the three fund managers we have right now (Nick, Elie, Lewis)", but the possibility is still interesting with any variation.

Comment by donychristie on Effective altruism is self-recommending · 2017-04-24T06:43:58.769Z · score: 8 (12 votes) · EA · GW

I enjoyed the SSC-style length and thought it helpful in fully explicating his arguments. :) It may be the case that an artificially-shortened version of the post would not be as listened-to. But perhaps a TL;DR could go at the top.

Comment by donychristie on Update on Effective Altruism Funds · 2017-04-23T19:04:02.953Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · EA · GW

Or maybe allocate grants according to a ranked preference vote of the three fund managers, plus have them all individually and publicly write up their reasoning and disagreements?

Serious question: What do you think of N fund managers in your scenario?

Comment by donychristie on Applications are open for EA Global Boston · 2017-04-03T15:54:09.781Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · EA · GW

This font is really hard to read.

Comment by donychristie on Concrete project lists · 2017-03-27T18:48:24.349Z · score: 2 (3 votes) · EA · GW

Please do! Have you gotten started yet? :-) #humancommitmentdevice

Comment by donychristie on Open Thread #36 · 2017-03-15T23:00:20.702Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · EA · GW

I've noticed a sizeable minority of posts in this forum have a font that is difficult for me to read. It's the second most-used font after the font in the OP. Does anyone know what it is?

I would recommend not using that font, personally.

Comment by donychristie on Peter Singer no-platformed by pro-disability protestors at Canadian university · 2017-03-15T22:56:56.885Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · EA · GW

That's useful to know. What other online presence besides this forum would you recommend people use?

Comment by donychristie on Essay contest: general considerations for evaluating small-scale giving opportunities ($300 for winning submission) · 2017-02-24T20:04:23.428Z · score: -1 (1 votes) · EA · GW

Here's my submission. :)

Comment by donychristie on Anonymous EA comments · 2017-02-21T23:38:57.927Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · EA · GW

I have been observing the same thing. What could we do to spark new ideas? Perhaps a recurring thread dedicated to it on this forum or Facebook, or perhaps a new Facebook group? A Giving Game for unexplored topics? How can we encourage creativity?

Comment by donychristie on Outcome of GWWC Outreach Experiment · 2017-02-10T15:59:51.524Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · EA · GW

I was also one of the volunteers who experienced a personal motivation failure; my apologies Linch!

I can confirm, having seen and provided some of the data, that it is not nearly enough to provide any meaningful conclusions whatsoever beyond the success/failure of the experiment itself. Still, it is great this experiment was done and written up despite the problems encountered!

Comment by donychristie on We Must Reassess What Makes a Charity Effective · 2016-12-24T14:05:38.292Z · score: 5 (5 votes) · EA · GW

I think your arguments could be very impactful if substantiated further. You claim that AMF, for example, is net-negative ("Organizations such as AMF consistently hurt all three sectors, and reverse any good that their interventions do"). At present, your arguments are largely qualitative. Could you quantitatively demonstrate how AMF is net-negative?

Comment by donychristie on What does Trump mean for EA? · 2016-11-19T20:23:15.030Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · EA · GW

I was under the impression that a bias against urgent events is an inculcated response that takes active strength to develop, a resistance to the much stronger human bias to act on urgent but not-as-important things. It seems to me that most altruistic and driven people still disproportionally care about current events and the discussions that surround them, over the Important Things.

Comment by donychristie on Dedicated Donors May Not Want to Sign the Giving What We Can Pledge · 2016-11-02T13:29:04.602Z · score: 0 (0 votes) · EA · GW

Can you change it back to 10%? If you can't, that sounds like a problem with the pledge system, not you. I think of Beeminder, with its adjustability that takes a week to set in. Perhaps a person could change the hard pledge that they have set themselves to, from a year out, like Beeminder taking a week for changes to set in.

Comment by donychristie on Setting Community Norms and Values: A response to the InIn Open Letter · 2016-10-27T04:19:05.269Z · score: 3 (3 votes) · EA · GW

I would think there are several smaller principles that go along with Doing Good Better, that would be helpful to have specified. For instance, if someone was claiming to Do Good Better, but wasn't actually Doing Good Better, in a way that is empirically obvious (e.g. murder, kidnapping, lying, scandal, increasing existential/suffering risks, movement-damage, etc.)

It also seems like we're aiming more for guidelines, not set-in-stone bylaws.

(EDIT: Not sure what kbog's response was, but I just realized my comment may seem like I was anchoring on Bad Things to make Gleb look bad; that wasn't my intent. In addition to being a bit silly, I was just listing things from most severe to less severe, and stopped, partly because I am not sure exactly what principles would make good guidelines)