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Rationality Merchandise - First Set

11 Post author: Gleb_Tsipursky 05 November 2015 06:12AM

As part of my broader project of promoting rationality to a wide audience, we developed clothing with rationality-themed slogans. This apparel is suited for aspiring rationalists to wear to show their affiliation with rationality, to remind themselves and other aspiring rationalists to improve, and to spread positive memes broadly.

 

My gratitude to all those who gave suggestions about and voted on these slogans, both on LW itself and the LW Facebook group. This is the first set of seven slogans that had the most popular support from Less Wrongers, and more will be coming soon.

 

The apparel is pretty affordable, starting at under $15. All profits will go to funding nonprofit work dedicated to spreading rationality to a broad audience.

 

Links to Clothing with Slogans:


1) Less Wrong Every Day

This slogan conveys a key aspiration of every aspiring rationalist - to grow less wrong every day and have a clearer map of the territory. This is not only a positive meme, but also a clear sign of affiliation with rationality and the Less Wrong community in particular.

 

2) Growing Mentally Stronger

This slogan conveys the broad goal of rationality, namely for its participants to grow mentally stronger. This shirt helps prime the wearer and those around the wearer to focus on growing more rational, both epistemically and instrumentally. It is more broadly accessible than something like "Less Wrong Every Day."

 

3) Living On Purpose

This slogan conveys the intentional nature of how aspiring rationalists live their life, with a clear set of terminal goals and strategies to reach those goals.

 

4) Please Provide An Example

This slogan and its variants received a lot of support from aspiring rationalists tired of discussions and debates with people who talked in broad abstract terms and failed to provide examples. It automatically reminds those who you are talking with, both aspiring rationalists and non-rationalists, to be concrete and specific in their engagement with you, and minimizes wasted airtime and inefficient discussions.

 

5) I Notice I'm Confused

This slogan reminds the wearer and those around the wearer of the vital skill of noticing confusion for growing aware of gaps between one's map and the reality of the territory. Moreover, in field testing this design, this slogan proved especially fruitful for prompting conversations about rationality from those curious about this slogan.

 

6) Glad To Change My Mind

This slogan conveys and reinforces one of the most fundamental aspects of rationality - the eagerness and yearning to change one's mind based on evidence. The slogan is an especially impactful way of conveying rationality broadly, as the sentiment of updating beliefs based on evidence is something that many intelligent people wish for society. Thus, it helps attract intellectually-oriented people into discussions about rationality.

 

7) Changed Your Mind? Achievement Unlocked!

This slogan has the same benefits as the above slogan, except being more outwardly oriented and expressing the message in a more meme-style format.

 

Other ideas for slogans that had support, in no particular order (Note that we limited the number of words to 4 longer words or 7 shorter words to fit on a T-shirt, and some of these combine Effective Altruism and Rationality):

 

  • How Much Do You Believe That?
  • Reach Your Goals Using Science
  • Truth Is Not Partisan
  • Glad To Give Citations
  • What is True is Already So
  • Reality Doesn’t Take Sides
  • In Math We Trust
  • In Reason We Trust
  • Seeking Constructive Feedback
  • Make New Mistakes Only
  • Constantly Optimizing
  • Absence Of Evidence Is Evidence Of Absence
  • Rationality: Accurate Beliefs + Winning Decisions
  • I Chose This Rationally
  • Combining Heart And Head
  • Effective Altruism
  • Doing the Most Good Per Dollar
  • Optimizing QALYs
  • Superdonor
  • Making My Life Meaningful
  • Purpose Comes from Within

 

I would appreciate feedback on the current designs. As you get and wear them, I'd appreciate learning about your experience wearing them, to learn what kind of reaction you get. So far, we've had quite positive reports from our field tests of the merchandise, with good conversations prompted by wearing these slogans.

 

Also, please share which of the additional slogans are your favorites, so we can get them done sooner. If you have additional ideas for slogans, list them in comments below, and remember the guidelines of 4 longer words to 7 short words, and making them accessible to a broad audience to spread rationality memes.

 

Besides clothing, what other kind of merchandise would you like to buy?

 

Look forward to your feedback! If you want to contact me privately about the merchandise or the broader project of spreading rationality to a broad audience, my email is gleb@intentionalinsights.org

 

 

Comments (85)

Comment author: Jacobian 06 November 2015 03:46:24PM *  8 points [-]

Gleb, first of all I think that Intentional Insights is a great idea and I support the cause! Unfortunately, I don't think I'll be supporting the cause by wearing t-shirts with slogans. In particular, InIn (as I understand it) is aimed at the broader audience, while all those t-shirts are basically in-jokes for people already in the LW space and baffling to anyone else.

I second ChristianKI's idea of incorporating graphic designs, maybe an "I changed my mind today!" shirt in the style of this famous one.

I would also suggest making the slogans intriguing and humorous instead of straightforward, so they can start conversations and be less embarrassing to wear. Off the top of my head:

  • I was stupid yesterday instead of "Less wrong every day"
  • Super agenty instead of "Living on purpose"
  • Evidence or it doesn't happen instead of "Absence Of Evidence Is Evidence Of Absence"

None of the above are really good, but that's the direction I think the t-shirts should be going in.

Comment author: nyor 09 November 2015 10:29:30AM *  0 points [-]

the designs from the famous one are bad..

Comment author: Gleb_Tsipursky 12 November 2015 10:25:33PM -2 points [-]

Please help optimize the designs of the t-shirts - more in this post. Thanks!

Comment author: Lumifer 12 November 2015 10:33:10PM 1 point [-]

Please don't spam the same comment to different threads.

Comment author: Gleb_Tsipursky 07 November 2015 12:47:19AM *  0 points [-]

Thanks for the support for InIn, and I hear your concerns about the in-jokes. This is one reason why we test-ran these slogans by a broad audience, and they proved intriguing to people, specifically the kind of people we want to attract to the rationality movement - reason-oriented young people, specifically reason-oriented college students who were members of the Secular Student Alliance. We chose to avoid some slogans that were not intriguing, such as "the map is not the territory."

Thanks for the ideas about the slogans! I like the idea of "I was stupider yesterday" and "Evidence or it doesn't happen," those might work well. "Super agenty" seems too much of an in-joke to me. Anyone else has suggestions for improving these?

Comment author: Gleb_Tsipursky 12 November 2015 10:25:26PM -2 points [-]

Please help optimize the designs of the t-shirts - more in this post. Thanks!

Comment author: Lumifer 12 November 2015 10:33:06PM 1 point [-]

Please don't spam the same comment to different threads.

Comment author: NancyLebovitz 05 November 2015 05:48:04PM 4 points [-]

Ask the next question.
---Theodore Sturgeon

Comment author: Gleb_Tsipursky 05 November 2015 06:00:19PM 1 point [-]

Thanks!

Comment author: Gleb_Tsipursky 12 November 2015 10:25:54PM -2 points [-]

Please help optimize the designs of the t-shirts - more in this post. Thanks!

Comment author: Lumifer 12 November 2015 10:33:14PM 1 point [-]

Please don't spam the same comment to different threads.

Comment author: [deleted] 06 November 2015 06:15:43AM *  10 points [-]

These are so embarrassing. Can we please be less dorky. I don't think these are gonna win people over, they're gonna make us seem like a weird subculture.

You were doing 1000x better in 2004. What's got in to you lately?

Comment author: ChristianKl 06 November 2015 01:15:31PM 4 points [-]

Unfortunately I have to admit that I agree. To me those clothes don't look stylish.

One of the people who frequently attends our local LW meetup wears Chaos Computer Club branded clothing. That's clothing that signals being a hacker and it looks stylish.

It might be worth to take those slogans and go to fiverr and ask people to design a T-Shirt that presents the slogan.

Comment author: Gleb_Tsipursky 07 November 2015 12:51:20AM 0 points [-]

I'd be glad to hear about ways of making the t-shirts look more stylish. That would be a good conversation to have :-)

Comment author: ChristianKl 07 November 2015 01:18:04AM 0 points [-]

I'm not good at fashion design and making things pretty.

I would go to Fiverr and give a few people a slogan around which to design a T-Shirt and hope for the best. If you don't like something about a design you give suggestions for improvement.

At best you get a person who knows a bit about style to help you with this. Either a guy who's well dressed or a woman.

Comment author: Gleb_Tsipursky 07 November 2015 01:59:03AM 0 points [-]

Christian, I did something like that with the designs we have, namely hire someone to design them. Would be good to get some clearer ideas on what would be a preferable style. Can you find a few shirt styles you like, and link to them?

Comment author: raydora 15 November 2015 04:55:50PM 1 point [-]

I'm a little surprised you hired someone for those designs. May I ask how much you paid? Quite honestly, you could've gotten the same design from a middle school student taking a graphic design class. This is fine if you're doing it yourself, but if you're paying for it, well, I think I could do better for free, and I've got absolutely no qualifications in the field.

I know what kind of designs appeal to a subset of society, but I guess we'd have to figure out who your target audience for those t-shirts are. It might not be anyone here, or anyone with the privilege of appreciating art, though the fact that you're publishing in sites like LifeHacker suggests otherwise.

It's the old argument with car dealership and personal injury/family/divorce law ads. Yes, they're not pleasing to you and me, but they may work for their intended audience.

However, I think there's something to be said for aesthetically pleasing designs, especially those that are universal enough to carry across a large number of cultures.

You can take a look at the general designer zeitgeist at portfolio websites like Behance and Dribble.

In addition to Fiverr, there's also 99designs and others. Plenty of t-shirt websites now use the contest format, as well, and you can look at submissions to see the kinds of designs that are given a chance.

Comment author: Gleb_Tsipursky 15 November 2015 08:52:44PM -1 points [-]

I hired a friend who is a website designer, has graphic design skills, and was interested in Intentional Insights as a project, so was willing to cut a deal for managing the design of the T-shirts and the backend of Cafepress alike.

Yeah, I hear you about the aesthetic appeal. I made a new post here asking people to give feedback on some design ideas.

Comment author: Gleb_Tsipursky 12 November 2015 10:24:40PM -2 points [-]

Please help improve the designs of the t-shirts - more in this post. Thanks!

Comment author: Lumifer 12 November 2015 10:32:52PM 1 point [-]

Please don't spam the same comment to different threads.

Comment author: username2 06 November 2015 03:42:08PM 0 points [-]

I think that t-shirts like that are going to appeal to other people, not only LWers. Most slogans are popular here, but they might appeal to people who do not even know what LW is.

Metal bands have their t-shirts and very often they are worn even by the people who don't listen to that band.

Comment author: ChristianKl 06 November 2015 05:00:08PM 0 points [-]

Metal bands have their t-shirts and very often they are worn even by the people who don't listen to that band.

Most of those T-Shirts look more stylish than the one's we have here.

Comment author: Lumifer 06 November 2015 05:26:54PM -2 points [-]

Metal bands have their t-shirts and very often they are worn even by the people who don't listen to that band.

You're dating yourself X-D

Comment author: Gleb_Tsipursky 12 November 2015 10:25:22PM -2 points [-]

Please help optimize the designs of the t-shirts - more in this post. Thanks!

Comment author: Lumifer 12 November 2015 10:33:02PM 1 point [-]

Please don't spam the same comment to different threads.

Comment author: Kawoomba 15 November 2015 08:56:01PM 1 point [-]

Please don't spam the same comment to different threads.

Comment author: Gleb_Tsipursky 07 November 2015 12:52:38AM -1 points [-]

Yup, we test-ran these slogans by non-Less Wrongers, specifically reason-oriented college students who were members of the Secular Student Alliance, and these proved interesting to them. We specifically avoided ones that were not interesting to them.

Comment author: Gleb_Tsipursky 12 November 2015 10:25:12PM -2 points [-]

Please help optimize the designs of the t-shirts - more in this post. Thanks!

Comment author: Lumifer 12 November 2015 10:33:42PM 1 point [-]

Please don't spam the same comment to different threads.

Comment author: Gleb_Tsipursky 12 November 2015 10:51:17PM 0 points [-]

My purpose was to tell each person who participated in the discussion about the new post. I see now that my doing so may be perceived as spam. Appreciate you pointing this out, and I will avoid doing so in the future. Thanks!

Comment author: gjm 12 November 2015 11:58:48PM 3 points [-]

If you feel that individuals need notifying of something individually, there's a private-message system for that.

Comment author: Gleb_Tsipursky 13 November 2015 12:55:18AM 0 points [-]

Good point! Didn't think of it :-( I will use that in the future.

Comment author: Gleb_Tsipursky 12 November 2015 10:24:33PM -1 points [-]

Please help improve the designs of the t-shirts - more in this post. Thanks!

Comment author: Lumifer 12 November 2015 10:32:47PM 2 points [-]

Please don't spam the same comment to different threads.

Comment author: Gleb_Tsipursky 07 November 2015 12:50:42AM -1 points [-]

I respect your opinion about the slogans. However, let's recall that these were the slogans that Less Wrongers submitted and upvoted. I'd be glad to go with others if there are additonal suggestions that get support :-)

Comment author: Gamer-Imp 07 November 2015 03:07:55AM 4 points [-]

It's not the slogans that are bad, it's the design. I'm a retailer by trade- these are not set up to appeal to many.

Comment author: Gleb_Tsipursky 07 November 2015 04:02:04AM 1 point [-]

Ah, gotcha, thanks for clarifying. So as a retailer, do you have ideas on how to figure out a good design?

Comment author: Gleb_Tsipursky 12 November 2015 10:25:05PM -2 points [-]

Please help optimize the designs of the t-shirts - more in this post. Thanks!

Comment author: Lumifer 12 November 2015 10:32:57PM 1 point [-]

Please don't spam the same comment to different threads.

Comment author: malcolmocean 07 November 2015 02:47:10AM *  2 points [-]

Clicked on the first link. First though: it's not the kind of clothes I would buy (I prefer to dress like this) but even if it were, the IntentionalInsights logo is wayyy too big. It masks the intended message.

In general I'm pretty not-into these. I'd prefer shirts that are more designed. Not just for me, but like, yeah, for people around me to be wearing. My impression (given the size of the logo and the omnipresent O-as-lightbulb) is that the primary purpose of these is to promote the intentional insights brand.

Comment author: ChristianKl 07 November 2015 12:49:39PM 0 points [-]

In general I'm pretty not-into these. I'd prefer shirts that are more designed. Not just for me, but like, yeah, for people around me to be wearing. My impression (given the size of the logo and the omnipresent O-as-lightbulb) is that the primary purpose of these is to promote the intentional insights brand.

I don't think a smaller logo would make the shirt look more designed.

Comment author: malcolmocean 08 November 2015 02:29:19AM 0 points [-]

I agree 100%. Those were mostly-unrelated remarks.

Comment author: Gleb_Tsipursky 07 November 2015 04:01:58AM -1 points [-]

Cool, thanks for the feedback. It sounds like there's a need for the shirts to be much more designed than they are currently.

FYI, the InIn logo is present only on the back of the vast majority of clothing, and it's based on advice from ChristianKi and others about the value of institutional loyalty present on the clothing. Only the clothing with no back options has the InIn logo on the front.

Comment author: Gleb_Tsipursky 12 November 2015 10:25:58PM -2 points [-]

Please help optimize the designs of the t-shirts - more in this post. Thanks!

Comment author: Lumifer 12 November 2015 10:33:17PM 1 point [-]

Please don't spam the same comment to different threads.

Comment author: entirelyuseless 13 November 2015 03:25:05PM 2 points [-]

Indeed. That includes you (I have the comments on RSS feed so it does matter to me.)

Comment author: Lumifer 13 November 2015 03:38:49PM 2 points [-]

I felt that it was a good -- what's the expression? -- teachable moment X-)

Comment author: Ella 09 November 2015 04:27:36AM 1 point [-]

I believe that the shirts design are really good and unique. The designs and the words on it really helps to give value on what we believe. The statement are very helpful and it really encouraging to improve our rationality.

Comment author: Pancho_Iba 05 November 2015 02:18:10PM 1 point [-]

I might be a little late with this, but what about a LW ring? A ring could be worn every day and on every ocassion.

Comment author: ChristianKl 06 November 2015 01:10:54PM 1 point [-]

Wearing a ring is not particularly practical. Nobody I know uses rings for tribal signaling. Doing so would be weird. Toastmasters goes for a pin. I have never worn my toastmasters pin but I think it would be better than a ring if you want to have something along those lines for LW.

Comment author: Pancho_Iba 09 November 2015 06:02:39PM 1 point [-]

Why do you say a ring is not practical?

A pin wouldn't be my first choice, but if it looks "sober" enough, I could go for it. Although I don't know if I could make the habit of taking the time to pin it.

Comment author: ChristianKl 09 November 2015 09:00:06PM 0 points [-]

Why do you say a ring is not practical?

I don't think that rings are good for blood flow in the finger. Espeically one's big enough to display a logo.

Comment author: Lumifer 09 November 2015 09:04:32PM 2 points [-]

I don't think that rings are good for blood flow in the finger.

Most women I know wear at least one ring, often more. Their fingers haven't fallen off and don't look to be blood-starved. Most married men wear a ring. Their fingers look fine, too.

Comment author: Morendil 09 November 2015 11:10:26PM 0 points [-]

Whatever happened to looking for evidence?

Comment author: Lumifer 10 November 2015 02:52:06AM 3 points [-]

Evidence should be relevant to the claim. The claim was "[not] good for blood flow in the finger". The original claim before that was that "[w]earing a ring is not particularly practical". None of these two claims seem to be anywhere close to to reality.

Comment author: Gleb_Tsipursky 12 November 2015 10:26:13PM -1 points [-]

Please help optimize the designs of the t-shirts - more in this post. Thanks!

Comment author: Lumifer 12 November 2015 10:33:21PM 1 point [-]

Please don't spam the same comment to different threads.

Comment author: ChristianKl 09 November 2015 09:12:55PM 0 points [-]

Most women I know wear at least one ring, often more. Their fingers haven't fallen off and don't look to be blood-starved.

That's a strawman. I didn't claim that it makes finger fall off.

Comment author: Lumifer 09 November 2015 09:14:43PM 2 points [-]

So what is it exactly that you are claiming?

Comment author: ChristianKl 09 November 2015 09:51:53PM 0 points [-]

Likely smaller range of effective movement. Woman wears a lot of rings just as they wear high heels that are also not ergonomic.

Seeking around I find studies that show that rings are very unhygenic for hospital stuff but not much investigation beyond that.

Comment author: Lumifer 09 November 2015 10:04:34PM *  3 points [-]

Likely smaller range of effective movement.

Umm... no.

Just like with the "blood flow", I think you're imagining things.

Rings are certainly inconvenient when you're doing some things with your hands, but it's not because they restrict the range of finger movement.

Comment author: Gleb_Tsipursky 12 November 2015 09:36:25PM -1 points [-]

Rings are certainly inconvenient when you're doing some things with your hands

I just have this urge to say this, and I think I'll go ahead: that's what she said

Comment author: Gleb_Tsipursky 12 November 2015 09:35:42PM -1 points [-]

Rings are certainly inconvenient when you're doing some things with your hands

I just have this urge to say this, and I think I'll go ahead: that's what she said

Comment author: Pancho_Iba 10 November 2015 01:17:13PM 0 points [-]

I have worn 3 rings in my life. The first one broke; it was made of coconut. The second one, I lost it. The third one was uncomfortable.

None of those prejudiced my blood flow. Now, I'm obviously not saying that no ring will do this, but that we would only need to pick a proper one. The second ring I mentioned was roughly 5mm wide, which is enough space to write LessWrong on it.

Comment author: Gleb_Tsipursky 12 November 2015 10:26:18PM -1 points [-]

Please help optimize the designs of the t-shirts - more in this post. Thanks!

Comment author: NancyLebovitz 13 November 2015 01:40:53PM 2 points [-]

I'm willing to tolerate some repetition of comments, but this is what I'd call overdoing it. (I'm speaking as a commenter, not the moderator.)

Please assume that LW readers can remember what you said if you've already said it more than once on the same page. Every comment takes up a little attention, and it should give something back in exchange-- new information, fun, something.

Comment author: Gleb_Tsipursky 13 November 2015 04:15:23PM -1 points [-]

Yup, I was mistaken. Acknowledged it here and will avoid this in the future.

Comment author: Lumifer 12 November 2015 10:33:24PM 1 point [-]

Please don't spam the same comment to different threads.

Comment author: Gleb_Tsipursky 12 November 2015 09:33:22PM *  0 points [-]

Here's a design for a ring, what do you think?

Comment author: Pancho_Iba 03 December 2015 05:03:38PM 0 points [-]

I'm sorry it took me so long to look at this. That's not what I had in mind, but I'll show you as soon as I can.

Comment author: Gleb_Tsipursky 03 December 2015 11:32:59PM -1 points [-]

Look forward to it!

Comment author: Gleb_Tsipursky 05 November 2015 05:34:38PM 0 points [-]

Hm, my guess is that a ring would be too hard to notice as a means of conveying rationality to others, and unless there is mass adoption by LWs, it would not be a strong signal of affiliation. However, I'm willing to update if a number of people indicate they would like one, as that would indicate evidence of likelihood of significant adoption.

Comment author: Pancho_Iba 09 November 2015 06:04:34PM 1 point [-]

That seems like a rational answer. :)

Comment author: Viliam 05 November 2015 08:28:49AM 1 point [-]

I am impressed by how you can find low-hanging fruit that hasn't been noticed for years.

Comment author: Gleb_Tsipursky 12 November 2015 10:26:42PM -1 points [-]

Please help optimize the designs of the t-shirts - more in this post. Thanks!

Comment author: Lumifer 12 November 2015 10:33:27PM 0 points [-]

Please don't spam the same comment to different threads.

Comment author: Gleb_Tsipursky 05 November 2015 05:28:48PM -1 points [-]

Viliam, thanks! I try :-)

Comment author: Morendil 05 November 2015 06:53:40AM 0 points [-]

"Glad To Change My Mind" goes to a 404 page.

Comment author: Gleb_Tsipursky 05 November 2015 05:31:33PM -1 points [-]

Strange, I clicked on it, and it went to the actual page for me. Regardless, I edited it and re-added the link. Here's another link to the same place, please try it and see if it goes to the right place for you.

Comment author: Morendil 08 November 2015 12:50:55PM 0 points [-]

What I suspect is happening, based on (just now) clicking the same link twice in a row and going once to a 404, then the next time to the intended page: one of the Web servers in the site's load balancing rotation is misconfigured, and systematically throwing errors.

You might want to ask them to look into it.

Comment author: Gleb_Tsipursky 08 November 2015 04:48:46PM -1 points [-]

Ah, alright, thanks for letting me know, I'll let them know. Appreciate you looking into this!

Comment author: Morendil 05 November 2015 07:31:21PM 0 points [-]

Yep, works now.

Comment author: Gleb_Tsipursky 05 November 2015 07:53:48PM *  -1 points [-]

Great, thanks for letting me know!

Comment author: Gleb_Tsipursky 12 November 2015 10:26:51PM -2 points [-]

Please help optimize the designs of the t-shirts - more in this post. Thanks!

Comment author: Lumifer 12 November 2015 10:33:32PM 1 point [-]

Please don't spam the same comment to different threads.