Tips for effective lobbying
Be clear about the goal
Your country needs to work towards the summit end of 2023, to pause AI training runs.
Find people to help you
- You need to find people who are skilled at lobbying, who know the political culture in your country.
- Do not expect to find the perfect person in one go. You have to iterate. Meet with people (even if it’s just a 30min call), ask them if they know who you should talk to. This will go way faster than you might think!
- If you already know some people who have a strong network, ask them for help.
- Don’t bet all your efforts on one contact. Try multiple approaches, multiple people. If multiple people will mention the same name, it’s probably a good idea to reach out to them.
- If people are technical / smart, you have a higher chance that they will take this problem seriously
Communicate clearly about the urgency and the risks
When you reach out to people, tell them about what the scientists are saying. The 10% survey should wake them up, and perhaps you need to remind them of the fact that the inventor of neural network learning (Geoffrey Hinton) stepped down as AI leader to talk about the existential risks.
Find your ultimate target
- There needs to be someone very powerful who needs to be convinced. Convincing that person is your goal.
- Prime minister? A different minister? Ask the experienced people who the right target is.
- Consider their goals and ambitions. Do they like organizing things? Do they get a kick out of being a thought leader? Do they shy away from controversy? All these things matter.
Write a letter
- It needs to be good, but it does not have to be perfect. Don’t work on this for months! We don’t have that time.
- We already have some documents (join the discord!)
- It should be short and to the point. Be clear about your advice: implement our proposals, attend the summit, form coalitions with other nations to achieve this.
- Be clear about urgency. This is an emergency.
- Find professors, opinion leaders, people with status to sign it. You should be able to find a couple by simply googling. Ask the people who help you to find more people.
- The first signature is the hardest. The higher status the first signee is, the easier it will be to grow the list.
- An Open Letter is a powerful tool. It might help speed up the process, but it could also damage you if the government will be in defensive mode instead of taking the lead. Discuss this with the local lobbyists
Get to it!
This all probably feels pretty intimidating. You’ve probably never done something like this before. But you can do it! It’s not that hard, it just takes some time, effort and a little courage. And you don’t have to do it alone. We already have a couple of initiatives running in different countries. We’re here to help each other out and fix this problem together. Join the discord and get started.