What is DesignedbySelection.org

We facilitate learning communities to learn about modern insights into human psychology, understanding human nature in light of biology and evolution.

Currently we are developing:

  • Two course sites evolutionary psychology (not yet launched) and sex differences (still in development) for parallel free discussions and a series of courses.
  • You can pay a subscription for full access (10 USD / month / site) to either or both sites and full access to course modules, for each of our series of courses, as they are released. And you will then also have access to the discussion around the course modules.
  • Or enjoy free access to the course introductions and discussion around the topic area by signing up for free.
    • For the sex differences course sign up here.
    • For the evoutionary psychology series of courses subscribe to our newsletter at the next link.
  • Sign up here for newsletter about further offerings from DesignedbySelection.org.

A great asset when you are learning about something new is to find people with similar interests in order to discuss the material you are attempting to ingest. Examining and critiquing the ideas with other people, elaborating on what the ideas mean for you and gaining from discussion with other people doing the same thing is motivating and brings ideas to life. This discussion helps you to incorporate those ideas you find interesting into your world view, leading to getting greater value from the ideas as well as improving retention of the ideas; or indeed allows you to reject the ideas in an informed fashion. You will then naturally remember or forget ideas in proportion to how useful they are to you. Ideas about human psychology will be remembered if they are impactful in your ability to understand and predict yourself and the social world around you.

We will facilitate such learning communities and give them the best technology available to help them connect. We will build a financially self sustaining entity directed by these communities input as to where we go, and fund interesting thinkers to produce further materials for our consumption.

What Will be Free and What Will Be Behind a Paywall?

See below but in summary we will have a series of courses which will be charged for; other materials and discussions will be freely available and everyone will be able to bring further interesting materials to the attention of the community, initiating further discussion.

Free Video With Leading Thinkers

We will feature free video interviews and free textual discussion of materials, available to everyone without subscription, just sign up to our web sites without charge.

The first course modules of our paid courses that we release will also be free and you'll be able to take part in text discussion about these course modules. However the video conferencing sessions we organise, even about the free materials, will be reserved for subscription payers.

Our free video interviews will also be streamed to FaceBook, Vimeo (ad free, free to everyone to access) and Youtube for wider consumption.

Access to Courses and Video Conference Study Groups

We hope to fund this effort, and pay our course creators, through charging a separate subscription per course site to access the video courses and then gain access to view course videos and discuss them. Basic course access is available at 10 USD / month / site but if you pay more then you will be given a special supporters badge in the course site. We will allow tiers of support. And we might think of special incentives for people who pay higher subscription rates, besides just our gratitude and community recognition, for example special access to discussion areas or special attention to your posts.

We will discuss our mostly video course materials:

  • in text (mostly in response to video modules of the course which will be released one at a time over the duration of the course) in areas only accessible to paid subscribers.
  • also you can take part in peer led, or perhaps occasionally expert led video conferencing discussion sessions.

Textual and video conferencing discussion of the paid group of subscribers will help to inform which experts we interview, then as I've said interviews are released for free.

Paid Courses Will Be Launched in January 2021

See the list of courses here.

Going Forward

Thanks to your support over time we expect to bring a number of experts on board to teach courses and that this will be a place for ongoing discussion about sex differences and evolutionary psychology. We want these to be new hubs of learning and discussion about sex differences and evolutionary psychology. To stay informed of future course offerings enter your email below.

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at https://www.designedbyselection.org/about/designed-by-selection/

I’m looking forward to people sharing their thoughts on this project here in the comments section. I’m going to be editing this article and we’ll possibly be revising our plan in response to comments, am looking for constructive criticism.


Some further thoughts

– Youtube and Facebook are popular, and one can more easily develop an audience there – compared to lesser known platforms?

Yes, we will use both platforms to promote our learning community. In conversations on those platforms we will refer people to the conversation on our platform.

We want to publish on both platforms I think. So we have a choice of splitting our community between the two platforms which we don’t control, and for our purposes (encouraging good quality conversation) use inferior technology, or we use both platforms to refer people to the relevant conversation on our platform.

How does one recruit for a ‘learning community?’

Barriers to using our platform will be very minimal. Click on this link and see how easy it is to sign up to our site. You can either enter a name, an email address and password or you can just sign up through being logged into Twitter, Facebook, Google, Github or Patreon. Signing up with those services will give us your email address and possibly a profile picture of you. As long as the user uses the same email address with any of the platforms logging in using that platform will be equivalent to logging in with any other.

So we establish a seed community by signing up a load of people for free and with people’s help to advertise the site. Then we further drive people to our site by posting video to FB and YT, and also posting discussion topics and encouraging conversation on our system.

We’ll post links to the Facebook conversations on our forum and link to the video and conversation on youtube summarise what was said and then continue the conversation on our system.

Once people take part in the conversation on our system they will then be sent email alerts or browser notifications when there are replies to the conversation. And they will be able to receive a daily summary of conversation by email, bringing them back to the site.

– Quilette might be a good example of how to monetize – but that is based mostly on articles / guest authors.

I think Quilette has done something similar to what we will attempt. They are offering content that is not available elsewhere. People share links to their content on social media. We will hope to be a new hub of conversation with people posting links to our conversations.

Why would people want to shift the conversation onto our system:

  • we will be uncancellable, we will have control over moderation and will exercise this control in a very light way, if at all.
  • we will have monetisation built into our platform so we can pay for content like courses. People can opt to subscribe to the paid channel and contribute to this. We’ll also have a good deal of quality free content.
  • we will have a better platform for encouraging good quality discourse. I think it won’t take long for people to see the advantages of our system.