The Placebo Happiness Study lets you participate in and benefit from cutting edge research on the placebo effect + happiness!
How can the placebo effect help me be happier?
The placebo effect is a result of a variety of inputs that support people in achieving their goals… including happiness! Recent research out of Harvard and other universities has shown that people can experience a placebo effect, even when they know it’s a Placebo.
Positive belief, social support, and daily rituals that reinforce the goals people wish to achieve are all inputs that can help make the placebo effect stronger for people. By working with the latest in placebo science, we built a system that supports people in experiencing greater happiness!
What is the global importance of this study?
Unhappiness is a global epidemic!
Most of our solutions for happiness are external: they include more pills, more jobs, more diversion, etc. The problem with such solutions is that happiness doesn't grow on trees, in cars, or in pills. It grows in our hearts, minds, and communities.
Learning to harness the placebo effect to be happier means making a shift inside - and the placebo effect is all about what's inside. This Placebo Happiness Study will help us create a long-term, sustainable happiness solution that anyone around the globe can use... without side effects.
What do I get for making a contribution?
You mean, besides the warm, fuzzy feeling in your heart that you'll get from knowing your contribution may help put smiles on peoples faces all around the world? :) As a contributor to this campaign, here's what you get:
- Be a part of the Placebo Happiness Study.
- Exclusive access to global results; compare your data with others.
- Share and compare your data with friends who sign up.
- Compare your data with people around the world.
- Help advance Placebo and happiness science.
- Updates on the latest findings that impact you.
- Find out just how much happier Placebos make you feel!
How does the Placebo Happiness Study work?
Step 0.5: Become a contributor.
Step 1: When the study begins after the campaign ends, you’ll choose one of a few 30-day “happiness” prescriptions created by renowned authors.
Step 2: Each day for 30 days you’ll do the following:
- Check in and rate your happiness.
- Watch a 1 to 2 minute always-unique insightful video (your Placebo).
- Set an intention for one thing you’ll do in the next 24 hours to be happier.
Step 3: After the study is complete, you’ll get follow up data, a copy of the published study, and officially be a part of the largest Placebo Happiness Study ever, helping to move Placebo and Happiness research forward!
What are the chances I actually feel happier?
In March we did the first pilot study. It was planned for 50 people, but over 1,000 people participated. The results:
Participants experienced a 40% increase in daily happiness from the beginning of the study to the end of the study!Incredibly, this was just a pilot study. Since then, we've begun working with UC San Diego researchers and NY Times best-selling authors to refine the process. So we believe there's a good shot you'll feel happier!
About the Placebo Group and Control Group
When the study begins, you will either be placed in the Placebo Group or the Control Group. (Typically a placebo group is the control group, but in this case it's Placebos whose efficacy we're testing!). Here's the functional difference:
- If you’re in the Placebo group, you can begin your prescription immediately after the IndieGoGo campaign ends.
- If you’re in the Control group, you’ll be asked to wait 30 days to begin your Prescription.
Some words from media outlets
A year ago, Placebo Effect raised $50,114 on IndieGoGo to do the research and development that brought us here today. Below are excerpts from articles published about us back then!
From Huffington Post: "When Daniel took me through a trial of the app, I instantly felt calmer and more centered, even though we were sitting in a busy café. It gave me hope."
From Fast Company: "The point is to replicate what’s important about the placebo effect, which isn’t the pill itself, but the experience."
From Mashable: "The whole idea is to create a comfortable "happy place" to achieve the proper effect."
From AOL: "It gives you a personalized placebo without actually handing you a pill or anything physical!"
From Geekwire: "One real benefit of the app is its mobility — you don’t need to go to a doctor’s office to get the placebo effect."
From The Verge: "If placebos could be effectively prescribed without the need to lie to patients, it would be revolutionary. Placebos are cheaper and safer than many treatments."
From HuffPostTV: "This app lets you create personalized placebo effects to enhance your life."
A little about us (I'll try to summarize!)
Our team includes renowned scientists, technologists, and community leaders. Founders Daniel Jacobs and Chigo Nwankpa have, collectively, invented numerous philanthropic and behavior change platforms that have benefited nonprofits, foundations, and businesses. Between us, over 300 million community members have used our technology inventions.
Advisors include James Fowler (Harvard PhD scientist, Guggenheim Fellow, one of TechCrunch's 100 Most Innovative, NY Times best seller), Paul King (former Dir. of Technology of the Gates foundation), Jeff Bader (President of NBC), Andy Smith (award-winning social change author, economist), and others who've done similarly amazing work in the world.
Our content partners helping to create prescriptions include 4 New York Times best selling authors, 5 Fortune 500 keynote speakers, 2 doctors, and a therapist.
About your privacy
Placebo Effect will never release any of your personal identifying data. We don't store your data in a way that anyone could learn who you are from it.
During and after the study, you'll have access to a dashboard where you can understand and visualize your data. We will also share with you the latest discoveries in the field of placebo science, and how you can use them to continue to improve your life.
The kinds of contributors we're looking for
Everyone! Happy, sad, feeble, strong, kids, adults, wallflowers, know-it-alls, skeptics, believers, friends, enemies, United States, Iran... everyone!
This study gets more powerful (and statistically significant) as more people participate. If you have an internet connection and you can spare 60 minutes over the course of the month, then you are who we want.
How we plan to use funds
Your pledge will be used to conduct our massive worldwide Placebo Happiness Study. Specifically, it'll be used to continue to develop the technology, do the reporting, make the data accessible and visualizable, and have amazing technologists and researchers participate in our work!
It just so happens that IndieGoGo has already been instrumental in our work. A year ago today, we raised $50,144 on IndieGoGo to build the first version of the technology that provides the foundation for the Placebo Happiness Study.
If people didn't care about the Placebo Effect, we wouldn't exist. We are here, only, because at every stage of our work and development, people have wanted to see what we're doing exist. We owe our work and existence to you and this community. So thank you!
Now - with your help - we're excited to be on the cutting edges of placebo research, and simultaneously we have the opportunity to spread lots of happiness into the universe!