How effective altruism went from a niche movement to a billion-dollar force

Dylan Matthews in Vox:

It’s safe to say that effective altruism is no longer the small, eclectic club of philosophers, charity researchers, and do-gooders it was just a decade ago. It’s an idea, and group of people, with roughly $26.6 billion in resources behind them, real and growing political power, and an increasing ability to noticeably change the world.

EA, as a subculture, has always been categorized by relentless, sometimes navel-gazing self-criticism and questioning of assumptions, so this development has prompted no small amount of internal consternation. A frequent lament in EA circles these days is that there’s just too much money, and not enough effective causes to spend it on. Bankman-Fried, who got interested in EA as an undergrad at MIT, “earned to give” through crypto trading so hard that he’s now worth about $12.8 billion as of this writing, almost all of which he has said he plans to give away to EA-aligned causes. (Disclosure: Future Perfect, which is partly supported through philanthropic giving, received a project grant from Building a Stronger Future, Bankman-Fried’s philanthropic arm.)

Along with the size of its collective bank account, EA’s priorities have also changed.

More here.