A group of behavioural scientists have collaborated to develop a website that is intended to inspire changes in behavior that could slow the spread of COVID-19. The website presents a list of four actions, and encourages visitors to consider (1) pledging to take the actions; and (2) sharing the website on social media.

Spencer Greenberg, Charles Bresler, and several other EAs have been involved in the project.

The website is here. Please sign the pledge if you believe that it is worth taking. Please also feel free to share it (unless you have a large social media following - in which case we would prefer if you could wait until March 18th).

Here is a summary of why we are doing this and why we believe it could be effective.

Additional features will be added to the site on Wednesday March 18th. If there are people with large social media followings who would be willing to share about the site, we would prefer that they share on Wednesday or soon thereafter (and we would be very grateful!)

Please fill in this form if you would like to offer feedback on the website and/or help us distribute the Stand Against Corona pledge during and after its launch.

Please also consider sharing this form with anyone you know who might be interested in helping to support this project.

Thank you in advance for your help!

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A belated follow-up that this was the summary of the results: https://twitter.com/elizabethdkim/status/1256598197222457351

with the full report here: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1e21GnMMmoyctCanIanlbSy2kcBULsG5au-NgHb08RME/edit

#StandAgainstCorona doubled as a digital experiment to identify effective psychological drivers of COVID prevention behaviors to apply to public health messaging. 

The website is now public and live and over 500 people have already signed. Here are some good reasons to help promote it in my opinion (and why I took time off work to help with it):

Changes in behavior are critical for slowing and managing the spread of viruses and disease. Small behaviour changes such as promoting social distancing can have a huge impact on reducing the number of people who get infected. This graphic explains it very well.

Even small commitments (such as pledges) can significantly increase behaviour change.      

Seeing what other people do is one of the most powerful and important drivers of behaviour.    

By making it easier to broadcast behaviour and preferences, social media platforms enable us to reach and influence millions of people with a few shares and in turn enables those people to easily influence many others with just a click of a button.

As an example, within 24 hours of Alyssa Milano’s tweet about #MeToo, 45% of facebook users had heard about it  - billions of people.

Imagine the effect of one person making important changes to their behaviour - already large - but now multiplied across millions of other people doing the same because they have seen others pledge and share. It could be hugely positive.

So please, think of all the people you love, and all the people others love, and take and share the pledge. We can't save everyone from suffering and dying from this terrible virus but we can hopefully save some of them. And even if we don't succeed we should surely try.