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Maniano

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(and I am also not sure whether the author actually heard that term)

I can't confidently recall it was "fag" or "faggot" at this point anymore, but the term was definitely used.

I'm choosing to interpret this as you wondering if I used that collection of words as a representation of the kind of soft opens some of the attendees engaged in instead of real examples (as opposed to suggesting that I was lying), but "fag", "retarded", "based", and "cuck" were all used quite a bit.

I am surprised by some of the things written here, and this line especially stood out to me:

The people at Manifest weren’t even disproportionately right-wing

Based on the discussions had at the Yarvin afterparty (which was organised by Curtis Yarvin, not Manifest), I'd say there was a significant overrepresentation of very very right-wing people at Manifest (as in the right-wing tail of the political distribution was overrepresented. Not making a statement on more moderate right-wingers or left-wingers.). This sentence felt especially surprising since you were there at the afterparty.[1] To be fair, there were also people there who weren't right-wing at all, and when I reached out to you to ask about this you said that you didn't find many to say right-wing things, and that only a small percentage of Manifest attendees were invited to the afterparty.

There is a chance that people around me said non-representatively many bigoted things, but I think it is more likely that your experience is explained by people avoiding more incendiary topics around an in-group famous, non-right wing blogger such as yourself. I am not very confident on this, though.

  1. ^

    I asked Omnizoid for his permission to mention this.

I feel like you should give it more time than just three hours before posting results. At least 24 hours sounds reasonable. The results for me already looked quite different from what you posted.

For example:

For what it is worth, a core argument I made was that many attendees at these events said clearly racist and bigoted things, far beyond milquetoast "there might be group IQ differences". I am also disturbed by people jumping to the truth-seeking defence.

Personally, I would trust an AI researcher even if they weren't racist.

Happy to hear that I didn't overreach too much, I debated posting that comment for a while.

To me this feels very relevant to a discussion of whether rationalists are allowing racism/sexism to ferment. 

I do consider it an important piece of evidence, but for example ACX comments sections, open threads, and culture war sections of the ACX Reddit are still often quite nasty, and frequently feature some notorious bigots (most notoriously HBD people) who have been long banned from LessWrong. For example, Steven Sailer and Emil O. W. Kirkegaard are not all too uncommon commenters in ACX comment sections.

I think LessWrong itself is not very likely to allow bigoted content compared to many other platforms where rationalist congregate. This is not enough in my view, and it would be wise to hold a harder line.

This feels a bit misleading (or an attempt at damage control?), as I am sure you have come across race topics in the past a lot due your high level of engagement in these communities over the years.

The conversation is mostly happening on Substack, Twitter, various chats, and in-person. I have a vague memory that it was a conscious decision by LessWrong moderators many years ago to not allow inflammatory race talk on LessWrong, and most of the most inflammatory people have been long banned.

There is a chance that this is a bit an overreaching analysis, as I do not personally know you very well: you do feel genuine in your defence of communities that are important to you, but I do suspect that you might have a major blind spot for various forms of non-overt bigotry, and you you might assume good intentions of everyone to a fault. Again, I apologise if this is out of line. I might be completely wrong on this as well.

There was a controversy about whether or not Hanania should be included last year (he was), mostly within connected communities.

I don't feel super strongly about the title, and would be happy to change it. What would you suggest as an alternative title?

Observe that it is here, on the EA forum, that a substantial fraction of commenters are calling for conference organizers to avoid inviting people for reasons that explicitly trade off against truth-seeking considerations.

I have mostly observed people who don't see the controversial speakers as a problem claim that excluding them would go against truth-seeking principles. People who'd prefer to not have them platformed at an event somewhat connected to EA don't seem to think this is a trade off.

Separately, if someone avoided attending Manifest because they anticipated unpleasantness stemming from the presence of these attendees, they either had wildly miscalibrated expectations about what Manifest would be like, or (frankly) they might benefit from asking themselves what is different about attending Manifest vs. attending any other similarly large social event (nearly all of which have invited people with similarly unpalatable views)

Anecdotally, a major reason I created this post was because the amount of very edgy people was significantly higher than the baseline for non-EA large events. I can't think of another event that I have attended where people would've felt comfortable saying the stuff that was being said. I didn't particularly seek these types of interactions either.

The fact is that we have multiple people who would have been a positive contribution to the event, multiple people who have had similar experiences, and at least one person who said they would not have come or volunteered if they would have known that race science is a topic that would continue to come up (and I myself was on the fence on whether or not I'd come again, but I probably would, especially if some actions are taken to make things more comfortable for everyone). To be fair, at least one person has said that they did not see anything like this happening during the events, so it is unclear how many people were actually left upset by these things (Austin's feedback form suggests not many).

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