Caring People Have More Sex

It turns out that nice guys do get the girl (but not these nice guys), and nice girls too! Altruism has been linked to more sexual partners and better relationships. There is a growing body of research that connects people who are emphatic are good partners to have in life. Over at Scientific American they have an article on how researchers are contrasting the concept that people need to be jerks to attract a mate.

Remember it’s good to be nice regardless of how much sex one gets.

This theory suggests that altruism may serve, in part, to convey one’s value as a mating partner, including one’s concern for others and likelihood of cooperating with future mates.  Research has shown that we prefer altruistic partners, all else being equal; especially for long-term mating (the evidence for altruism being preferred in short-term mates is mixed). Not surprisingly, then, the pull to demonstrate one’s altruism can be strong. Some research has shown that men will actively compete with one another (termed competitive altruism) by making charitable donations to women. Interestingly, these charitable donations increase when the target of one’s altruism is physically attractive.

Read more.

Why Poorer People Are Kind to One Another

For some reason there are stereotypes out there that imply that if you’re not part of the middle class then you are a jerk. Well, it looks like that maybe half true. New research has come out that started with the question why statistically do poorer people give a higher portion of their income to charity compared to the rich has now concluded with the idea that rich people are not as empathetic as the poor.

It would be nice if people who were better off gave more of their income to charities and to other worthy causes. I hope this inspires all of you to give.

Michael W Kraus, of the University of California, San Francisco, is one of a number of social psychologists who have recently been busy demonstrating that lower socioeconomic status (SES) is intricately linked to all sorts of prosocial behaviours. Everything else equal, the less wealth, education and employment status we have, the more charitable, generous, trusting and helpful we appear to become. In interactions with strangers, poorer people are more likely to use polite, attentive, respectful gestures. Most recently, in a paper just published in the prestigious journal Psychological Science, Kraus et al report that lower SES subjects show significantly greater empathy than their richer, better educated counterparts. He argues that this tendency to empathise may at least partly explain the other observations of prosocial behaviour.

Read the rest at the Guardian.

Random Hacks of Kindness

Random Hacks of Kindness is a chance to get tech people together with creative people to make the world a better place. One in Toronto is happening on Dec. 4th so if you can make it, do it. The world will thank you.

We will need Hackers, storytellers, software engineers, programmers, university students, marketers, web content creators, emergency planners,international policy and development students, teachers, librarians, videographers, event planners, organizers, project managers and YOU. Creating humanitarian software in a hackathon is a very special collective collaboration.
Participants can select from a number of problem definitions. (These will be posted in the new few weeks.)
Video screens and online tools like IRC, blogs, wikis and more tools will connect the world. You could be collaborating with any of these countries to solve problems and brainstorm. Yes, there is even some healthy competition in store.
Help us make this global event RHoK. RHoK 2.0 is happening in Toronto (Canada), Chicago (USA), Berlin (Germany), Bangalore(India), Mexico City(Mexico), New York(New York), Sao Paulo (Brazil), Aarhus (Denmark), Nairobi (Kenya) and Lusaka (Zambia).

Check out Random Hacks of Kindness.

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