This is a quick post to officially announce that AI Safety Support is on an indefinite pause. We have been on pause for a while now, but I wanted to make it official. I might have more to say on this later but expect that if I wait till I write a longer explanation, it will not happen.

I’m calling it a pause because maybe AI Safety Support does reopen in some capacity in the future, possibly with a different person running it.

A lack of funding is a part of the decision but is not the only factor. That is to say that I’m not looking for offers of funding.

AI Safety Support Ltd, the Australian-based charity, supports several other projects and will continue to do so. None of these projects should be affected by this.

If you have any questions, you can ask them in the comments here, but I may not respond to them.

It has been a wild ride these last few years. I have so much love and appreciation for everyone I have worked with.

Thank you all so much.

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Sorted by Click to highlight new comments since: Today at 12:21 PM

Hi JJ, just wanted to say a big thank you for all your work!

I used the fiscal sponsorship, the free health coaching, the AISS newsletter, and the alignment slack, and found all of them super helpful! And probably I've used even more things which of I'm not even aware that they are coming from AISS. 

I particularly appreciate your lots of links page. It's one of my favorite resources for an overview of which things exist in the AI safety ecosystem.

I hope whatever you are up to next goes well!

Just wanted to +1 the appreciation for all your work over the years JJ

Are you happy to share a short summary of the non-funding factors that contributed to this decision? All the best with whatever is next!

As far as I know, the reason AISS shut down was 100% because of lack of funding. However, it's not so easy to just start things up again. People who don't get paid tend to quit and move on.

AI Safety Support has been for a long time a remarkably active in-the-trenches group patching the many otherwise gaping holes in the ecosystem (someone who's available to talk and help people get a basic understanding of the lie of the land from a friendly face, resources to keep people informed in ways which were otherwise neglected, support around fiscal sponsorship and coaching), especially for people trying to join the effort who don't have a close connection to the inner circles where it's less obvious that these are needed.

I'm sad to see the supporters not having been adequately supported to keep up this part of the mission, but excited by JJ's new project: Ashgro.

I'm also excited by AI Safety Quest stepping up as a distributed, scalable, grassroots version of several of the main duties of AI Safety Support, which are ever more keenly needed with the flood of people who want to help as awareness spreads.

Super helpful background info, thanks so much :)

I, and perhaps others, would be curious about a bit more of a postmortem. It seems like this was a beloved and valuable project. Why did it get shut down? Did you get burnt out? Was it a lack of funds? Any requests? Is there something that the EA community could have done better?

Sorry to hear about this, but thank you for all of your hard work!

Will the AI alignment Slack continue to run?

Thanks JJ and everyone who has worked on AISS for all your great work!

There's no need to shut down the AI Alignment Slack.
Moderation hasn't been too much of a burden, but it could be better. Would be good to find someone else to take ownership of this.

JJ--thanks for all your words of support in the last few years. I appreciate your attitude, care, and your hard work. I'm sorry to hear about this. Hope you are well!

Thanks for all your work, JJ! Good luck with whatever you end up doing next!

(Note in case anybody else wants to pick up where AISS left off: This is a bit unfortunate for me given that not having an org to sponsor work visas in the UK might affect my decision for moving to there. We had talked about AISS trying to do the work to get that setup in the next 1-2 years.)

I still have plans to setup a research org in the UK

Did LTFF decline you grant application? Have you applied to manifund.org?

No decision from LTFF. Funding wouldn't help at this point.

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