New Social Contract prize challenge

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The Transhumanist Party (UK) sponsored a prize challenge during April and May 2017 for the best H+Pedia contributions on the topic of New Social Contract.

Announcement of the competition

The contest was announced on the party's blog[1]:

The Transhumanist Party (UK) announces a new prize challenge: "New Social Contract".

The purpose of the prize challenge is to encourage the development of ideas that will accelerate a positive transition to a society in which automation benefits everyone, and in which people are no longer evaluated according to the extent of paid employment that they undertake...

As automation, robots, and AI take over more of the tasks which previously filled our hours of employment, more people will experience technological unemployment or technological under-employment. Unsurprisingly, this prospect can cause fear, alienation, and anger. That's why a new social contract is needed...

When people cannot earn money from paid employment, how else will they be able to obtain food, shelter, and possessions? How will they pay for their healthcare, education, travel, and other experiences?

In principle, automation, robots and AI will manufacture sufficient goods to comfortably take care of the needs of everyone in the planet. But how will the distribution of these goods take place? This is the question of the new social contract. This is also the topic of a new prize challenge which the Transhumanist Party is sponsoring through H+Pedia.

The rules of the prize challenge

The announcement of the competition set out the rules of the prize challenge:

The National Executive Committee (NEC) of the Transhumanist Party has agreed that a fund of up to £500 be made available as prizes for contributions, between now and the end of May, in the H+Pedia online wiki.

Contributions will be rewarded that document, curate, and identify key ideas about technological unemployment, automation in the workforce, universal basic income, etc, all from the transhumanist angle.

Note that the goal isn't to duplicate, on H+Pedia, lots of information that's already available elsewhere. Instead, the goal is to provide good links and recommendations about that material. Where there are gaps in that material, contributors are encouraged to provide original analyses, and to explore pros and cons of specific proposals from a technoprogressive point of view.

Two top-level H+Pedia pages to build on are:

Decisions on the allocation of prizes will be made by the NEC. Factors to be taken into consideration will include:

  • Clarity of contribution
  • Originality of contribution
  • Contributions made in a collaborative spirit
  • Avoidance of duplication
  • Constructive consideration of alternative ideas
  • Special emphasis on transhumanist ideas.
  • Prizes won't be restricted to people who write long articles. People can be awarded prizes for making a small number of short contributions, that improve the quality of the material.

As well as documentation, the NEC are keen to highlight and reward the creation of suitable "memes", graphic designs, slogans, and videos.

Prizes announced

At a National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting on Tuesday 18th July, the NEC agreed that prizes should be awarded as follows:

  • A primary award prize of £200 to H+Pedia user TranshumanTees
  • An auxiliary prize of £50 to H+Pedia user Laika.

These prizes are in recognition of excellent contributions to the pages on

The NEC is interested to hear suggestions on steps to encourage wider participation in the editing of the political pages in H+Pedia.

References

  1. New Social Contract (Transhumanist Party blog)