Mohammad Ismam Huda

269 karmaJoined Jun 2022


There is no justification for it. EA was intended to be a more mass movement at the onset, and that is the way for it to reach it's true potential.

The harsh crticism of EA has only been a good thing, forcing us to have higher standards and rigour. We don't want an echochamber.

I would see it as a thoroughly good thing if Open Philanthropy were to combat the protrayal of itself as a shadowy cabal (like in the recent politico piece) for example by:

  • Having more democratic buy-in with the public
    • e.g. Having a bigger public presence in media, relying on a more diverse pool of funding than (i.e. less billionarie funding)
  • Engaged in less political lobbying
  • More transparent about the network of organisations around them
    • e.g. from the Politico article: "... said Open Philanthropy’s use of Horizon ... suggests an attempt to mask the program’s ties to Open Philanthropy, the effective altruism movement or leading AI firms"

If anyone is after a good example of EA criticism, I cannot strongly reccommend enough the Doing EA Better post by the ConcernedEAs group.

Just wanting to express my shared disappointment with how parts of this community embraced crypto/ gambling etc. as Gemma points out in her post.

Strongly agree. I definitely would like to see more content on neartermist causes/ careers. But importantly, I would like to see this content contributed by authors who hold neartermist views and can give those topics justice. Whilst I am appreciative of 80,000 Hours and GWWC attempting to accomodate longtermism-skeptics with some neartermist content, their neartermist content feels condescending because it doesn't properly showcase the perspectives of Effective Altruists who are skeptical of longtermist framings.


I also personally worry 80,000 Hours is seen as the "official EA cause prioritisation" resource and this:

  • alienates readers with different views and conclusions,
  • does not show that the EA community has diverse and varied views,
  • has misled readers into thinking there is an "official EA position" on best careers/ cause areas

Having more neartermist content will help with this, but I also would like to see 80,000 Hours host content from authors with clashing views. E.g., 80,000 makes a very forceful case that Climate Change is not a material X-Risk, and I would like to see disagreeing writers critique that view on their site.


I also think you hit the nail on the head about many readers being unreceptive to longtermism for concerns like tractability, and that is entirely valid for them.

The problem I am trying to communicate is less so about agreeing with deep critiques, and more-so about attacking the authors of critiques personally.

This is where I think EA (or more fairly - this specific forum) underperforms other intellectual movements. e.g. Physicists, philosophers, social scientists can disagree about different theories in deep but respectful and professional ways. In EA however, deep criticism is received very personally by the community, leading to emotional/personal attacks on character.

Absolutely not. If anything, it is the other way around.

Statistics is much more applied. I did a statistics degree and became an actuary. It has been a very rewarding and impactful career. I am often quite shocked at the poor data/ statistics skills demonstrated by maths graduates, who (presumably because they are specialised in subjects like topology) are far behind their graduate peers with backgrounds in Psychology or Economics.

Is Branson a good choice for frugality? He owns an island, registered in a tax haven, and lavishes his celebrity & politica friends with gifts.

Maybe Mike Canon-Brookes is a better example of a "frugal" billionaire (frugal relative to the typical billionaire).

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