The Life You Can Save September 2013
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The Life You Can Save has had a great end to the summer and we are looking forward to making this giving season something special. Our team has expanded dramatically, we've made significant improvements to the community platform on our website and we've received some welcome media coverage.

Let's start with you. We are continuously improving the log-in features on our website, and our latest addition is the ability to create and join groups. These groups can be anything from a discussion area for teachers to share ideas about bringing effective giving to the classroom, to a support group for those who have pledged or are thinking of pledging, to a mechanism for connecting supporters in a particular region. In order to create or join a group, you will first need to make sure that you have signed up as a website user (see the top-right of any page) and then go here. This is a great way to connect with other pledgers and supporters, so we encourage you to make the most of this feature and to send any feedback to [email protected] Enjoy!

You may remember from our last newsletter that we had begun working with Jon Behar, of A Path That's Clear, and a documentary film maker called Laura Gamse, director of The Creators. We are very happy to announce that Jon and Laura have now joined our team! You can read more about them both on our website. And Holly, just after returning from the effective altruism camp in Switzerland, was excited to start working on The Life You Can Save full-time.

The past two months have seen at least four prominent articles on effective giving that mention The Life You Can Save - Peter Singer wrote a New York Times article contrasting an art museum with a charity that cures blindness, Matthew Yglesias of Slate.com compared military strikes in Syria with our estimate for how much it costs to save a life through the Against Malaria Foundation ($1,865), and on Gawker.com, Hamilton Nolan contrasted the opera and Harvard with our list of recommended charities.

On that note, we are in the process of producing an updated list of recommended charities in time for the holiday season. We are also developing a marketing plan with a short-term focus on this holiday season; we have so many promising ideas on the table that it will be difficult to know where to start! If you have any creative ideas for holiday campaigns, we would love to hear them. One other important section of our roadmap for the next couple of years is the development of sophisticated ways to track our impact, so that we can identify areas for improvement. We will need your help with this, so please take a moment to respond to any surveys that we send you and, as always, we welcome feedback on any aspect of our operations.

Until next time,
Holly & Charlie

Peter Singer's talk on effective altruism visualized by TED and Superinteressante
Peter Singer's talk on effective altruism visualized by TED and Superinteressante
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Charity Updates
 
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Charities must spend MORE on marketing, not less
by Charlie Bresler
When I went to Long Beach to hear Peter Singer at TED I had the pleasure of also hearing Dan Pallotta's talk: The way we think about charity is deadwrong. Of course Peter's talk was great – I knew it would be – but I did not know Dan and, therefore, I was pleasantly surprised and pleased by his message. [Read more]
 
Reinventing Philanthropy
by Peter Singer
It's good to see more people thinking seriously about how to make philanthropy more effective. The latest addition to the literature is Eric Friedman's Reinventing Philanthropy: A framework for more effective giving (Potomac, Washington DC, 2013). It is, as Friedman says in the introduction, "by a donor, about donors, and for donors who want to look critically at what they can do to improve their philanthropy." [Read more]
 
Effective Altruism Camp in Switzerland
by Holly Morgan
Considering that the term "effective altruism" was coined less than two years ago, I’m excited to have joined 150 other people at three effective altruism camps around the globe this year, and to know that there are hundreds, perhaps thousands, of others identifying as "effective altruists" whom I have yet to meet. [Read more]
 
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Myth #5: You shouldn't give loads of your money to charity. "I already do my bit for charity." While there are sensible limits to how much you should give to charity, those limits are certainly not at the level of "I sponsored my workmate $10 for his charity marathon three months ago (and most people were giving only $5!)"…and yet I hear words to that effect relatively often. [Read more]
 
How to Keep Your Pledge (9)
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Strategy 9: Check in with yourself. Immediately after you make your next gift, I invite you to pause. Go to a quiet place in your house where you won't be disturbed. Put away all distractions (that means you, smartphone!), set a timer for five minutes, and sit. Stop. Then ask yourself "How do I feel about the gift I just made?" [Read more]
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