I think this is a great post and makes a really important point. Thanks for posting
Thanks, i do think we have a basic disagreement here about design patterns but i appreciate you taking the time to defend and explain your choices.
I don't feel either of these reply's address my points very well (as a member who signed the pledge prior to 2014).
As far as I can tell you accept the first point I made and don't address it. Ok, me. I think the funds are fine you just haven't done the work of showing they are better than other donation routes at all.
In regards to the second point you get very fixated on the default slider setting being representative of the most engaged members of the community. I don't want yet more peer pressure to donate to what the most engaged members of think.(And the fact that you unilaterally changed the pledge still shouldn't invalidate my reasons for signing it). But, even for post 2014 members it takes a lot of chutzpah to just set a default - at the very least even if you are recommending the EA funds start each bar at 0%. It is such a dark pattern when to donate to causes you by default get a recommendation
you didn't choose then to find other choices you have to click a "back" arrow to a page you have never seen before, go past a statement saying we recommend these funds then manually unclick/click each choice then click forward again. It's so telling when you do the sliders don't start at some nudge level but at a level the user can choose!
There are two long term goals being pursued here by CEA, visible in the design of the site:
1. To increase donations to the EA funds from GWWC members by making the funds the "default" option" and thus increase the importance/power of CEA to guide donations through the funds. (The whole new site is setup to make the funds the default way to give, and to give prominence to the funds, other donation options or recording external donations are much less visible and hidden away in a way that seems deliberate)
2. To set defaults for donations through the site that nudge people towards the cause areas that CEA leadership largely favors and away from cause areas that GWWC was historically focused on. (By default - sliders on the new site allocate the majority of donations made from the pledge page to causes other than global poverty. And this resets as the default every time, with no option to change this or set persistent cause area preferences).
The site is designed with the interests of CEA and what it thinks is best in mind. The functionality for GWWC members is not the priority.
I would like to see a prize or incentive for the best comment on an article in the last month. Has that been tried before? Looking at the number of articles now submitted, I think the forum is doing well on articles. However, the comments and engagement with each submission is still often low. The winning 3 articles this month got only 9-2-2 comments respectively. If they are exemplary of the community and platform (which after a quick browse I have no reason to doubt) surely it would be worth encouraging a few more comments and a bit more discussion?
One complexity here may be in how members are treating taxation and tax deductibility in relation to their donations. "income" in your sample is self-reported and it is presumably pre-tax income. However, per GWWC: "While we have defined income as pre-tax in the past, after speaking with members in a variety of situations we believe there should be some flexibility here.
Thus people may be keeping to the terms of their pledge but donating less than 10% of their pre-tax income if they are not getting a tax deduction
The title of this post is “Does EA need an underlying philosophy? Could Sentientism be that philosophy?”
I would consider both of those points to betray a lack of basic understanding of effective altruism. There are lots of good resources elsewhere- perhaps it would be good to have a basic faq article / wiki that could be Linked in such cases?
Apologies I had it in my head that ACE was a CEA project
According to my facebook this topic has had 156 comments on the EA facbook group already. I don't want to repeat or diminish those comments here so what is the purpose of opening a parallel discussion here as this seems like a topic which has attracted a huge amount of EA discussion already?