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adamaero comments on Near-Term Effective Altruism Discord - Effective Altruism Forum

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Comment author: kbog  (EA Profile) 10 September 2018 03:46:43AM *  0 points [-]

All three of those are merely cases of you disagreeing with my claims or my confidence in them. I thought I was being tone-policed, but you are just saying that I am wrong.

Too many times on Facebook groups, I have to see local events that I can't attend.

The fact that people are unable to attend something is one of the problems with the server that is being promoted here. I'm not in favor of anything in EA that does this, if someone ever tries to exclude near-term EAs from their event then give me a ping and I will argue with them too!

Too many times I see EA posts that have no relevance to my involvement in EA.

Theoretical physicists are not upset by the presence of discussion on experimental physics, and the ones who disbelieve in dark matter are not upset by the presence of discussion from people who do. If lots of posts aren't relevant to you, the right answer is presumably to ignore those posts; I and so many other EAs do it all the time, it's easy.

If you want more content that is relevant to you... that's perfect! Make it! Request it! Ask questions about it! Be the change that you wish to see in the world.

Perhaps think about it like the difference between the Physics Stack Exchange chat and the Electrical Engineering (EE) Stack Exchange chat. They're very close to the same. EE is based in physics obviously. But they're separate.

The physics stack exchange doesn't try to exclude engineers, and they didn't make it because they thought that engineers were "alienating"; if they operated on that basis then it would create unnecessary annoyance for everyone. They separate because they are different topics, with different questions that need to be answered, and the skills and education which are relevant to one are very different from those that matter for another. But "near-term Effective Altruism", just like "long-term Effective Altruism", is a poorly specified bundle of positions with no common methodological thread. The common thread within each bundle is not any legitimate underlying presupposition about values or methodology that may form the foundation for further inquiry, it is an ex post facto conclusion that the right cause is something that happens to be short- or long-term. And while some cause conclusions could form a meaningful basis for significant further inquiry (e.g., you selected poverty as a cause, so now you just want to talk about poverty relief), the mere conclusion that the right cause is something that matters in the near or long term does not form any meaningful basis, because there is little in the way of general ideas, tools, resources, or methodologies which matter greatly for one bundle of causes but not the other.

But not only is the original analogy with physics and engineering relevantly incorrect, it's specifically pernicious, because many EAs already implicitly have the misconception that supporting near-term or long-term causes is a matter of philosophical presupposition or overarching methodology; in fact it is probably the greatest confusion that EAs have about EA and therefore it wouldn't be wise to reinforce it.

Comment author: adamaero  (EA Profile) 11 September 2018 08:51:51PM *  0 points [-]

@kbog: Most of your responses with respect to my reply do not make sense. Example, EA Chicago posts their events on the Facebook page. I don't live in Chicago...(simple as that)

The physics stack exchange doesn't try to exclude engineers

~ completely missed the point. Additionally, the analogy is fine. There is seldom such a thing as an absolute analogy. With that, it doesn't follow that somehow the analogy is wrong related to these elusively implicit misconceptions by EAs about EAs.

So to sum up, you're reading in way too far to what I wrote originally. I was answering your question related to why your first reply was "harsher than necessary".

Comment author: kbog  (EA Profile) 11 September 2018 09:39:13PM *  -1 points [-]

EA Chicago posts their events on the Facebook page. I don't live in Chicago...(simple as that)

OK, but has nothing to do with whether or not we should have this discord server... why bring it up? In the context of your statements, can't you see how much it looks like someone is complaining that there are too many events that only appeal to EAs who support long-term causes, and too few events for EAs who support near-term causes?

~ completely missed the point. Additionally, the analogy is fine. There is seldom such a thing as an absolute analogy

It's not that the analogy was not absolute, it's that it was relevantly wrong for the topic of discussion. But given that your argument doesn't seem to be what I thought it was, that's fine, it could very well be relevant for your point.

I was answering your question related to why your first reply was "harsher than necessary".

I figured that "harsh" refers to tone. If I insult you, or try to make you feel bad, or inject vicious sarcasm, then I'm being harsh. You didn't talk about anything along those lines, but you did seem to be disputing my claims about the viability of the OP, so I took it to be a defense of having this new discord server. If you're not talking on either of those issues then I don't know what your point is.

Comment author: adamaero  (EA Profile) 12 September 2018 12:55:09AM -1 points [-]

They were examples to how I saw how your post as "harsher than necessary". You've diluted these mere examples into a frivolous debate. If you believe you were not harsh at all, then believe what you want to believe.

Comment author: kbog  (EA Profile) 12 September 2018 04:13:46AM *  -2 points [-]

As I stated already, "harsh" is a question of tone, and you clearly weren't talking about my tone. So I have no clue what your position is or what you were trying to accomplish by providing your examples. There's nothing I can do in the absence of clarification.

Comment author: adamaero  (EA Profile) 12 September 2018 07:50:18PM *  -1 points [-]

Diction and pronouns have tone (e.g., "you're reinforcing" vs a more modest "that could reinforce"). With that, expressing certainty, about predictions (e.g., "whenever a group of people") is another way I saw the original comment as harsh--unless you're an expert in the field (and a relevant study would help too). I, for one, am no anthropologist nor sociologist.


I'm not debating if here. You asked how, and I quoted the statements I saw as the most harsh + most questionable. [I'm trying to say this lightly. Instead I could have made that last bit, " + furthest from the truth". But I didn't, because I'm trying to demonstrate. (And that's not what I really mean anyway.)] I never said you are wrong about _ _ _ _ _. I said, it may not be true; it may be true.

You seem to still think the original comment was not harsher than necessary by your own definition of tone. Either way, I'm guessing Mrs. Wise gave you much less confusing pointers with her PM.