Good Brockley



"It's fake philanthropy and it's faux-anonymity! What do you think about that?"
- Larry David


The pay-it-forward principle works, according to a new study.

Derren Brown has just blogged about a US study, which shows that there is a 'kindness multiplier' that spreads via social networks. If we do something good, other people will follow-suit and ultimately triple the impact of that initial gesture.

The lesson appears to be that if you do something good for Brockley. Make sure people know about it and we'll all join in. So please use this thread to tell us, unashamedly, of something good you have done lately.

24 comments:

Anonymous said...

I bought an artisan bun.

Brockley Nick said...

Three more artisan buns will have been eaten because of your noble gesture. Well done.

Tamsin said...

Haven't played the piece, not wired for sound, but from what you write it sounds terribly up-front and American. The British way is to go around doing good, being all self-deprecating whenever the subject comes up but at the same time deeply resentful that your doing good is not appreciated.

To do a Nick here:

Zaphod Beeblebrox: Hey, guy, you've just saved all your lives.
Arthur Dent: Oh, it was nothing really...
ZB: Well, in that case ...[turns to other things]
AD: [all hurt] Well, when I say it was nothing actually....

Can't remember it exactly but it was up to Douglas Adams' usual standard of brilliant sideways observation and taking the unexpected literally.

Brockley Nick said...

Of course, UK rates of philanthropy are much lower than in the US, so maybe showing off about it might be a good idea. But the video clip is not what you think it is.

Miska said...

I'm running a jumble sale at the amersham... that's good for everyone. Especially those who like to buy old stuff for nuppence.

I was also considering starting up a 'clean up other people's front gardens/yards' club. But I might be too lazy.

Monkeyboy said...

Is this creeping Thatcherism? Philanthropy trickling down to the masses there by making the welfare state redundant. Fred won't like it, that's all I'm saying

(leant my neighbours my hedge trimmer and printed something off for them when their PC died - a bun rating of 2x3=6)

Ed said...

Jumble sale? When?

Anonymous said...

In saying that paying it forward "works", isn't it a bit like saying that pyramid schemes and chain letters work? It's the same principle from what I can see. They work for the first few people but then it eventually peters out leaving net 'givers' and net 'takers'.

I certainly believe in philanthropy, 'love thy neighbour' and so on, but I don't think that good deeds should be done in the hope that we'll get something in return.

Brockley Nick said...

The point isn't that you'll get something back, but that your good deeds will inspire others to do even more good.

Tallulah said...

I use homeopathic medicine and have a bag for life, so I've already done this.

Anonymous said...

If it works, why isn't there an infinite number of good deeds being done every day already?

Brockley Nick said...

I don't know. The paper probably addresses that question. But there is a well-understood 'spending multiplier' effect too - the money I spend buying a coffee from the broca, Erin then spends getting a haircut at Geddes, etc. It doesn't mean we're all infinitely wealthy.

Tamsin said...

Cast your bread on the waters and it sometimes comes back buttered was my mother's philosophy. And quite often it happens that because of doing what could be classed as good deeds you are in a position to receive some positive benefit yourself.

Miska said...

Ooh I think you're all rather negative. Of course good deeds are done daily. Millions of em.

It's not entirely altruism anyway cos it makes you feel all warm and nice inside.

...Except for the time I stood outside the front door of a lonely elderly neighbour listening to her talk for hours about snooker. That was freezing and made me feel, well, cold and confused inside...

27th March. Goingforasongjumble.blogspot.com. May ask Brockley Nick et al if I can post a poster actually. It's pretty snazzy.

Anonymous said...

I suspect the weak link is that it doesn't actually inspire other people to do good deeds. There may be a ripple effect from good deeds (sounds very plausible) but receipt of the benefit doesn't actually make people do good deeds themselves - or only a small proportion of them.

It's a question of logic. If it worked consistently, the world would be saturated with good deeds.

Ed said...

Jumble and car boot sale info please Nick. Great idea Miska! My sister is very into freecycle and swapshop [?]. Good way to swap stuff with other Brocklites...

Miska said...

I think Nick's good deed should be Brockley central dating too... the orchard and a plethora of single locals. What more could make a man feel warm inside? (No pervyness intended).

Anonymous said...

As has previously reported, there is already a matchmaking group of sorts up on Hilly Fields that anyone can join.

Anonymous said...

yawn

Brockley Nick said...

@Miska - I've been meaning to start a thread on jumble sales for a while, so please send me the details.

As for dating - we now have a classifieds page, so why not send me an ad?!

Crofton Parker said...

Must say I did feel better the other day, when I had been trying to enjoy a sit in Ladywell Cemetery despite the area around the bench being strewn with chicken boxes and lager cans, fuming about the Curse of the Chicken Box in Brockley - when I actually jumped up and spent five minutes picking up the crap (litterers had kindly also left plastic bag I could collect the stuff in) before slinging it in a bin. Oh the sense of righteousness, and oh the sense of clean.

But on subject of Good Brockley I reckon one of the biggest good-doers is Mr BC. This site and the hard work of Brockley Nick in particular has made the world a much better place for me. Makes me connected, and interested, and engaged.

tamsin said...

Now played the u-tube, fun.

Prompts me, though, to share something my mother told me that really was anonymous at the time. Lord Nuffield wanted to give to the war effort but did not want this to leak out or to be thanked for it. My mother thinks that his wife probably made the suggestion that he supply sanitary towels for the women in the armed services. They were quite hard sometimes for civilians to obtain and it must have been very convenient for WAAFs and WRENs etc. to simply pick them up as needed from the QM, but no-one would ever mention such a thing.

Brockley Nick said...

Cheers cp, but not really a good deed, I'm only in it for the chicks

Anonymous said...

Hats off to the council for once. I noticed recently that there was a lot of tree planting going on in the area so I called the council and asked if they would plant a tree outside my house - they said yes immediately. Just got home and there it is! That's my contribution to making Brockley a little nicer....

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