Author Topic: Why does this happen? Atheist vs Christian Fundraiser results  (Read 741 times)

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Offline Anastasia1

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Why does this happen? Atheist vs Christian Fundraiser results
« on: October 01, 2017, 11:54:39 PM »
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YROimcT_4bk

She compared reactions and results for a Christian sign when fundraising and an atheist one for the same cause.

Thoughts?
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Offline William T

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Re: Why does this happen? Atheist vs Christian Fundraiser results
« Reply #1 on: October 02, 2017, 12:35:13 AM »
some examples to help illustrate:

If you saw a sign that said "Cannibals association of America donating to hurricane relief" vs "The Sisters of Mercy"

Ohio State donating to hurricane relief vs Michigan

Atheist vs Methodist to hurricane relief

Coke vs Pepsi for hurricane relief

In this test if is the same two people holding a sign and collecting money the same way...I don't know why you wouldn't expect different results with sign.  If you didn't you wouldn't put "X for Hurricane relief" you would just have a sign with "Hurricane relief". 

I could warrant a guess that people would find "atheists for hurricane relief" to be a bit odd, as opposed to Methodists probably being a charity organization...there are tons of secular charity organizations, few if any would label their charity organization "atheist" so it probably causes a natural skepticism.

As for things like Ohio and Michigan or Coke vs Pepsi, just the name alone is going to catch different people.  I am more likely to be more receptive or initially interested in something that says "Ohio" over "Michigan", it's just my orientation.

as for a sign that says "cannibals" vs "Sisters of mercy":

If ideally both these organizations are doing the same thing, you could argue "it shouldn't matter one way or the other who you give your money to", but still I think a lot more people would be more skeptical about the motives and institutions of "cannibalism for America" vs the "Sisters of Mercy", and would based purely off the label prefer to take their chances with donating to "Sisters of Mercy".  This is just an abstract limit case, but the point is like "Ohio" or "Michigan" a sign appealing more directly to belief, or initial orientation, or moral sentiment will catch the eye and influence action over a very similar sign.  If that wasn't the case we wouldn't write anything, distinctions matter.

For me personally when thinking about it:

I would probably much more likely give money to a charity that said "Methodist relief fund for Hurricane Irma victims" vs "Atheists for, etc" because my mind would process "methodist" as any ho-hum generic charity organization and "Atheist" as eccentrics / activists trying to push their beliefs or agenda in a sign.  My guess is that is probably a fairly standard position most people would have, "Atheist" is just too odd a label to throw up for generic charity like a "hurricane / homeless" relief fund as opposed to "Methodist".
« Last Edit: October 02, 2017, 12:43:10 AM by William T »

Offline Volnutt

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Re: Why does this happen? Atheist vs Christian Fundraiser results
« Reply #2 on: October 02, 2017, 02:05:07 AM »
What William said makes sense for the most part.

I'm not skeptical of atheist charity per se, so it's kind of a Buridan's Ass for me. Confronted on the street, I'd probably wind up giving to the one that said "Christian" because of all kinds of unconscious biases.
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Offline William T

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Re: Why does this happen? Atheist vs Christian Fundraiser results
« Reply #3 on: October 02, 2017, 03:23:45 AM »
What William said makes sense for the most part.

I'm not skeptical of atheist charity per se, so it's kind of a Buridan's Ass for me. Confronted on the street, I'd probably wind up giving to the one that said "Christian" because of all kinds of unconscious biases.

Just to maybe clarify a bit as to why I would guess most people would justifiably not donate to "atheists for the homeless"is because they would filter "atheist" as a philosophy / very narrow activist group like "vegan", "1st amendment activist", "anti-racists", or whatever and something like "Mormons", "Jehovah witness",  "free masons", "Muslims" as things that would be mainstream and generic charity organizations that would perform the normative tasks a charity is expected to do.  One is "this is my philosophy" the other is "this is an organization".    People are probably not too concerned about your beliefs and something like "atheist" draws attention to a belief and agenda the way "christian" or "humanitarian" does not.   It's just how these names and associations work, which in part has to do with actual has history and performance and number of organizations; one can name can be generically be  filtered off as "charity organization" while the other as "personal philosophy".   "Atheist" comes off as a category error and something probably worthy of suspicion.  I'm not going to do it right now out of laziness, but I'm sure it would take little effort to see the "Christian" moniker badly misplaced and looks like someone is trying to push an agenda, this would be the case with the name "atheist" in the charity sign, it looks self serving.

My hypothesis here is her signs are saying this:

Christian Sign:  Donate to this charity

Atheist Sign: This is my agenda that I am calling attention to

that's how people are probably reading it, and that's why the Christian sign will outperform the atheist sign.  The Atheist label doesn't have much currency  for a generic use of "charity organization".

« Last Edit: October 02, 2017, 03:34:06 AM by William T »

Offline William T

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Re: Why does this happen? Atheist vs Christian Fundraiser results
« Reply #4 on: October 02, 2017, 03:45:34 AM »
Oh, and if they want to say "all names ought be equal" change the name from "Atheists for victims of Hurricane Irma" To "People who love watching people die in hurricanes for hurricane relief of victims of Irma".  So again, names matter and not all names and labels are equal. I think in her premise that label could be used and it ought be treated equally with any other name out there.
« Last Edit: October 02, 2017, 03:50:07 AM by William T »

Offline Volnutt

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Re: Why does this happen? Atheist vs Christian Fundraiser results
« Reply #5 on: October 02, 2017, 04:17:37 AM »
What William said makes sense for the most part.

I'm not skeptical of atheist charity per se, so it's kind of a Buridan's Ass for me. Confronted on the street, I'd probably wind up giving to the one that said "Christian" because of all kinds of unconscious biases.

Just to maybe clarify a bit as to why I would guess most people would justifiably not donate to "atheists for the homeless"is because they would filter "atheist" as a philosophy / very narrow activist group like "vegan", "1st amendment activist", "anti-racists", or whatever and something like "Mormons", "Jehovah witness",  "free masons", "Muslims" as things that would be mainstream and generic charity organizations that would perform the normative tasks a charity is expected to do.  One is "this is my philosophy" the other is "this is an organization".    People are probably not too concerned about your beliefs and something like "atheist" draws attention to a belief and agenda the way "christian" or "humanitarian" does not.   It's just how these names and associations work, which in part has to do with actual has history and performance and number of organizations; one can name can be generically be  filtered off as "charity organization" while the other as "personal philosophy".   "Atheist" comes off as a category error and something probably worthy of suspicion.  I'm not going to do it right now out of laziness, but I'm sure it would take little effort to see the "Christian" moniker badly misplaced and looks like someone is trying to push an agenda, this would be the case with the name "atheist" in the charity sign, it looks self serving.

My hypothesis here is her signs are saying this:

Christian Sign:  Donate to this charity

Atheist Sign: This is my agenda that I am calling attention to

that's how people are probably reading it, and that's why the Christian sign will outperform the atheist sign.  The Atheist label doesn't have much currency  for a generic use of "charity organization".

Interesting idea.
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Offline JoeS2

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Re: Why does this happen? Atheist vs Christian Fundraiser results
« Reply #6 on: November 03, 2017, 01:26:45 AM »
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YROimcT_4bk

She compared reactions and results for a Christian sign when fundraising and an atheist one for the same cause.

Thoughts?

Hey, how about people just helping people for a change......

Offline Porter ODoran

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Re: Why does this happen? Atheist vs Christian Fundraiser results
« Reply #7 on: November 03, 2017, 02:12:09 PM »
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YROimcT_4bk

She compared reactions and results for a Christian sign when fundraising and an atheist one for the same cause.

Thoughts?

Because the recent push by some Redditors to develop "atheist charities" is a political novelty. People don't give real money away lightly.

And the video you linked is also atheist activism. Which means, inadvertently of course, your post here is also atheist activism.
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Offline Volnutt

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Re: Why does this happen? Atheist vs Christian Fundraiser results
« Reply #8 on: November 03, 2017, 05:30:37 PM »
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YROimcT_4bk

She compared reactions and results for a Christian sign when fundraising and an atheist one for the same cause.

Thoughts?

Because the recent push by some Redditors to develop "atheist charities" is a political novelty. People don't give real money away lightly.

And the video you linked is also atheist activism. Which means, inadvertently of course, your post here is also atheist activism.

So one cannot discuss anything atheist without promoting it or engaging in "activism?" Like I said, get over yourself.
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Re: Why does this happen? Atheist vs Christian Fundraiser results
« Reply #9 on: February 13, 2018, 10:37:34 AM »
There is actually an issue here.

Numerically, a lot more people donated when they held the Christian sign, BUT even still, they raised twice as much money carrying the Atheist sign.

Thoughts?
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Offline Volnutt

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Re: Why does this happen? Atheist vs Christian Fundraiser results
« Reply #10 on: February 13, 2018, 08:27:56 PM »
There is actually an issue here.

Numerically, a lot more people donated when they held the Christian sign, BUT even still, they raised twice as much money carrying the Atheist sign.

Thoughts?

American atheists tend to have more money than American Christians (consistent with it being a more middle class and up phenomenon)?

But mostly I think there's some leg work involved in showing that it's a representative sample of anything. It depends on the area, which people happened to see the signs, which out of those who walked by gave or didn't give (and how much they gave vs. how much cash they had on hand vs. their total income), various demographic attitudes in America to anything labelled "Christian," compared with their attitudes towards something labelled "Atheist."

The experiment would likely need to be repeated several times in different places at different times, and maybe even subjected to the double-blind treatment- how many people in said areas at said times are likely to give to disaster relief regardless of what label it comes packaged with?

At most it's an indication that Christianity in the US has a bad general reputation among the more well-to-do in this cultural-political climate. To which I say, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=--9oYufMS_k
« Last Edit: February 13, 2018, 08:39:02 PM by Volnutt »
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