The coin of the realm is the Prediction and the Long Bet. A Long Bet is made when a member challenges a predictor to a wager over their Prediction. Members and bettors alike can follow the action from a single page throughout the process. Predictions that stand unchallenged are listed in Predictions On the Record; challenged predictions appear in Bets On the Record. Bets on the Record are set in stone and can never be changed.
Making a Prediction
A member who makes a Prediction is called the predictor. To make a Prediction:
- 1. Click "Make a Prediction" on the menu bar.
- 2. State your Prediction and provide an argument supporting it. Mediator approval, member voting, discussion, and betting all depend on the strength of this argument --- the more detail the better. You won't be able to edit your argument once it is publicly displayed, so take your time with it.
- 3. Propose an end-date. Remember, the minimum bet period is two years.
- 4. Choose a payment method for the $50 Prediction publishing fee. Long Bets is a non-profit endeavor ---your publishing fee makes it possible for us to keep your Prediction On the Record in perpetuity.
- 5. Peruse the Bettor's Agreement and confirm that you've read it. see Bettor's Agreement »
- 6. Click "Make This Prediction."
- 7. The Prediction is assigned an identification number and is sent to a Long Bets mediator for approval. make a prediction »
A Long Bets mediator will determine if the Proposed Prediction adheres to The Rules of Long Bets, ensuring especially that it is "societally or scientifically important." If approved, the predictor is notified and it becomes a Recorded Prediction, appearing in Predictions On the Record, where it remains until challenged by another Long Bets member. if it doesn't meet the Long Bets criteria, the mediator will contact the predictor with suggestions for improvement.
Betting on a Prediction
Predictions can be challenged by any Long Bets member. To challenge a Prediction:
- 1. Log into the site and select the Prediction you want to challenge from Predictions on the Record.
- 2. On the Prediction page, provide an argument to support your challenge. More than one person may challenge a Prediction, and the predictor will choose who to bet with on the strength of this argument.
- 3. Enter the amount you want to bet. The minimum bet is $200. The predictor will have to match your wager.
- 4. Enter the charity that will receive the winnings if you win.
- 5. Click "Make this Challenge". The predictor will be notified immediately that they have been challenged to a bet. Since more than one member can challenge a Prediction, the predictor may take some time to choose a challenger. You will be notified if your challenge is accepted or if the predictor chooses a different challenger.
predictor, challenger & mediator
Once the predictor chooses a challenger, the Recorded Prediction becomes a Proposed Bet and negotiation begins:
- 1. The predictor and challenger (the bettors) can negotiate a variety of ways. Either can make changes to the Judgement Criteria (the specific terms by which the bet will be adjudicated), the wager amount, and their selected charities by visiting the Long Bet page. Bettors are also encouraged to use the Discussion to refine the terms of their bet. Negotiation can also be done by email or phone. Experience shows that having a Long Bets mediator handy makes negotiation go better for both parties, and one is assigned to your bet for the duration of negotiation.
- 2. Once judgement criteria and wager have been decided, each bettor clicks "Finalize" on their Long Bet page. Finalization also includes sending the payment for the bet to Long Bets and signing the Bettor's Agreement.
- 3. Once both bettors have finalized and paid for the bet, the bet is sent to your mediator for final approval.
A Long Bets mediator will determine if the Proposed Bet adheres to The Rules of Long Bets. If approved, the bettors are notified and it becomes a Recorded Bet, appearing in Bets On the Record, where it is set in stone forever. if it doesn't meet the Long Bets criteria, the mediator will contact the bettors with suggestions for improvement.
Congratulations! A parchment certificate authenticating your bet will be sent to you, to be viewed with growing pride or dismay.
YEARS GO BY...
Long Bets endeavors to keep in touch with both bettors by email, or whatever replaces email. Discussion traffic on the Long Bet page waxes and wanes, depending on events in the world that make the bet more or less interesting. Discussion may pick up as the end-date of the bet approaches.
The Bet is Resolved
predictor, challenger & Long Bets
- 1. The bet is resolved either when its period is up, or when conditions in the terms are met. (If a woman US President were elected in 2016, a bet that stated it would happen by 2024 would end early.) If both bettors are still alive and both agree who won and who lost, the bet is concluded. Otherwise the outcome will be adjudicated by Long Bets.
- 2. The winnings (plus growth) are awarded with fanfare to the winner's preferred charity. The winner, if still alive, can change charities if desired (but not to multiple recipients). If the winner is no longer alive and the originally designated charity is gone or drastically changed, Long Bets may award the winnings to a charity deemed closest to the winner's original intentions.
- 3. The result of the bet is publicized on the Long Bets website and perhaps elsewhere. Discussion of what may be learned from the bet and its outcome is encouraged. That's what feeds into "improved long-term thinking" - the real payoff.