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Convoluted Charities

Harlan
Posts: 1,880
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1/28/2010 6:53:33 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
Charities which decide how much to give as charity by having random people attempt to do some pointless, arbitrary task, really piss me off. I'm talking about like charity marathons or this site: http://www.freerice.com....

It's such a fraudulent, phony way of giving charity that I don't think people should condescend to participate in them at all. Basically, by making their donations based on people's tasks, they are a) making an excuse to not give more money [by having it depend on an unrelated factor], and b) giving people the false illusion that they are actually doing anything concrete to help whatever cause.

The underlying concept of the whole thing is "Oh, you'd like me to give these poor people money but your too selfish to donate your own? Then dance, minion! Ha ha ha ha ha! Entertain me! Feel good about yourself, because somehow you running a marathon is directly related to poor people being fed."

It is the most pointless and nonproductive waste of time that ever existed, a cruel mockery of the people in plight who require real things to be done about thier situation, not pretend ones. If a charity wants to donate money, it should do it directly, without this nonsense bullsh*t to deal with in the middle.
Volkov
Posts: 9,765
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1/28/2010 7:14:17 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
Harlan... its a way for people to get involved. Nothing more. People like feeling involved, you know? They like doing things... outside of the house... this might be a hard concept, but its true, believe me.
Volkov
Posts: 9,765
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1/28/2010 7:16:29 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
Well, the "outside of the house" part was more in response to the running thing. But my point still stands. Its all about getting involved.
Harlan
Posts: 1,880
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1/28/2010 7:24:18 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 1/28/2010 7:14:17 PM, Volkov wrote:
Harlan... its a way for people to get involved. Nothing more. People like feeling involved, you know? They like doing things... outside of the house... this might be a hard concept, but its true, believe me.

I think people should jog by all means. It's great exercise.

But they shouldn't do so in this context. It's a sham. A big, self-deceiving sham of "feeling involved."
Maikuru
Posts: 9,112
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1/28/2010 7:34:55 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 1/28/2010 6:53:33 PM, Harlan wrote:

The underlying concept of the whole thing is "Oh, you'd like me to give these poor people money but your too selfish to donate your own? Then dance, minion! Ha ha ha ha ha! Entertain me! Feel good about yourself, because somehow you running a marathon is directly related to poor people being fed."

Wow, that is not what's going on at all. Like Volkov said, these charities allow individuals to feel genuinely involved. Having to spend real time and effort in order to reach a goal requires much more commitment than cutting a check, and thus increase the contributors' sense of dedication to a cause.

Also, activities like group marathons allow for incredible exposure to the public. Watching so many individuals sacrificing more than just their money is inspiring and inevitably leads to more contributions in the long run.

You've also got to remember that charities battling huge problems, like cancer for example, require a steady source of income for years and years to make any sort of impact. If their only method of raising funds was to collect anonymous donations, they'd be facing the issue of contributor fatigue and disinterest. However, if you let people feel like they are actually accomplishing something (like finishing a race), that sense of pride may encourage them to return.
"You assume I wouldn't want to burn this whole place to the ground."
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Harlan
Posts: 1,880
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1/29/2010 10:11:57 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
Wow, that is not what's going on at all. Like Volkov said, these charities allow individuals to feel genuinely involved. Having to spend real time and effort in order to reach a goal requires much more commitment than cutting a check, and thus increase the contributors' sense of dedication to a cause.

So the contributors should implement this pointless conditional for the purpose of motivating themselves? What? So basically, "we aren't motivated. We need to get these people to put on a motivational demonstration for us?"

And as far as feeling involved, that really is pointless. Those people aren't really involved with the solution to those problems, and it's not right for them to pretend to be. Charities should focus on giving charity to those in need, not giving self-esteem boosts to a irrelevant third party (the people running the marathon).

Also, activities like group marathons allow for incredible exposure to the public. Watching so many individuals sacrificing more than just their money is inspiring and inevitably leads to more contributions in the long run.

OK, if people want to do a big public spectacle which is symbolic of thier dedication to it, that's fine. But the entire concept of the amount of charity being based on this spectacle degrades the spectacle into being a false depiction of something it's not. Because it should be very clear in such a demonstration that the demonstration itself isn't doing sh*t for the world, but is merely symbolism.

You've also got to remember that charities battling huge problems, like cancer for example, require a steady source of income for years and years to make any sort of impact. If their only method of raising funds was to collect anonymous donations, they'd be facing the issue of contributor fatigue and disinterest. However, if you let people feel like they are actually accomplishing something (like finishing a race), that sense of pride may encourage them to return.

The people that run the races aren't giving any money to the charity. They are just a meaningless and arbitrary means of calculating how much money the charity is going to give. So the amount's not about compassion, but relying on a completely random marathon.

All I'm suggesting is that the charity donates the same money that they are donating, yet calculate the proper amount with reason rather than races.
honkerburger
Posts: 77
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1/29/2010 10:14:55 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
I'm not gonna lie, Harlan has a point. I mean seriously the poor people just want help. Running a marathon/going to a concert/getting fake letters with pictures of starving Africans achieves none of that help.
Maikuru
Posts: 9,112
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1/30/2010 10:20:07 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 1/29/2010 10:11:57 PM, Harlan wrote:

All I'm suggesting is that the charity donates the same money that they are donating, yet calculate the proper amount with reason rather than races.

Regardless of whether or not you agree with the means through which these charities garner donations, those participants who engage in the activity very clearly are involved. As I explained before, the "show" of it all is meant to increase the volunteer pool, dedication among participants, public awareness, and a sense of accomplishment among those involved (an obvious need for charities requiring long-term investment).

To have a charity or company contribute a set amount in spite of the activities, or do away with the activities entirely, eliminates all of those benefits. You'd be left with a shallower donater pool and less incentive or means to continue contributions. It would be lovely to imagine that all of these charities have limitless resources and can cure diseases with no public intervention, but when the reality falls short of the fantasy, activity-based events help fill in the gaps.
"You assume I wouldn't want to burn this whole place to the ground."
- lamerde

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Harlan
Posts: 1,880
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2/1/2010 7:58:28 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 2/1/2010 7:23:33 PM, Puck wrote:
But freerice is fun. The benefit others may receive from me enjoying it is secondary. :P

No, THIS is fun.