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Carriers Delay Paying Japan's Texting Donations

timothy posted about 3 years ago | from the nickel-and-diming-but-in-yen dept.

Japan 235

Julie188 writes "As the fallout from the Japanese earthquake/tsunami/nuclear meltdown tragedy continues to unfold, Americans want to help. We learned from the Haiti disaster that the easiest thing to do is to text a donation to our favorite relief organization. But, unlike Haiti, Japan's text-to-give donations will take as long as three months to get to the relief agency. And the company handling these donations, mGive.com, has not waived the transaction fees it charges relief agencies."

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235 comments

May I speak for all of us when I say... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#35601378)

... cunts!

Re:May I speak for all of us when I say... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#35601512)

Shouldn't you all be mighty proud? What's more capitalistic than benefiting from the suffering of others? They are the ultimate patriots. God bless them.

Re:May I speak for all of us when I say... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#35601688)

Calling someone that body part is insulting to a whole class of people. Call them dicks instead! Problem solved.

Re:May I speak for all of us when I say... (1)

ByOhTek (1181381) | about 3 years ago | (#35601868)

Nahh, I'm pretty sure this is well covered in the Rules of Aquisition, and everyone know female farengi can't do business.

Surprised? (4, Interesting)

Nimloth (704789) | about 3 years ago | (#35601408)

And the company handling these donations, mGive.com, has not waived the transaction fees it charges relief agencies.

These companies profit from situations like this. This is their business case. What did you expect?

Re:Surprised? (3, Informative)

cpu6502 (1960974) | about 3 years ago | (#35601498)

Just because you profit when you help someone, does not mean you have to be an ass about it, and delay the contributions by three months. [edit] Just noticed mGive is a NON-profit.

I see Microsoft had to apologize too:
"Microsoft apologizes for using Japan disaster to market Bing"
http://www.networkworld.com/community/blog/microsoft-apologizes-using-japan-disaster-mar [networkworld.com]

Re:Surprised? (3, Interesting)

nomadic (141991) | about 3 years ago | (#35601600)

Right, so the accusation that they're unduly delaying the donations is a valid one. However, the accusation that they're following their business model, is not. Now you can criticize the business model as a whole on moral grounds if you wish, but arguing that they should waive the charge in this specific case makes no sense.

Re:Surprised? (3, Informative)

demonlapin (527802) | about 3 years ago | (#35601704)

The delay is from the carrier, not mGive. Hardly surprising that mGive isn't going to process transactions for free (they have bills too), nor that they're going to wait until they actually get the money to send it on to the charities. Just because you service not-for-profit corporations (and mind you, "not for profit" just means that there aren't shareholders to get a share of the coin, not that nobody makes any money) doesn't mean you don't have to make money to stay alive.

Re:Surprised? (4, Informative)

Intron (870560) | about 3 years ago | (#35602132)

There are three parties involved here:

charity like RedCross, etc - have not requested expedited funds according to mGive.

mGive - is just the conduit from the wireless company to the charity. They are non-profit but supported by a transaction fee. Its unlikely they have enough cash sitting around to give expedited payments.

Wireless company - Verizon, etc. They don't send the payment to mGive until you pay your wireless bill. Otherwise they are making a loan to the charity with no collateral. They DO have the cash, tho.

With the money having to take 3 steps to get from you to the charity, 30-90 days is still quick.

Re:Surprised? (5, Insightful)

characterZer0 (138196) | about 3 years ago | (#35602308)

With the money having to take 3 steps to get from you to the charity, 30-90 days is still quick.

90 days was quick in the days of the Pony Express.

In the days of 500ms ping times around the world, 90 days in incredibly slow. I understand that the money is not there until you pay your wireless bill, but that is 45 days or less, so anything over 50 days is very slow.

Re:Surprised? (4, Informative)

ProppaT (557551) | about 3 years ago | (#35601524)

This is one of the reasons all the news outlets told people to wait until the smoke settled to donate to the relief effort. Profiteers sit around waiting for these types of disasters. Even if this isn't necessarily profiteer related, you should always know where your money is going when you donate and you never will with these "txt xxxxx to donate $10" numbers, unless they're spearheaded by someone like the Red Cross or another charity that has a plan outlined.

Re:Surprised? (0)

kevinNCSU (1531307) | about 3 years ago | (#35602038)

You didn't need to wait for the smoke to settle, you'd just have to God forbid navigate all the way to a trusted entity's website like the Red Cross and enter all the digits of your credit card number or use your pay pal account. But for most people, golly gee, it's just too much work for trying to help out beyond sending a text.

Re:Surprised? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#35601548)

I expected cake.

Re:Surprised? (1)

ackthpt (218170) | about 3 years ago | (#35601826)

And the company handling these donations, mGive.com, has not waived the transaction fees it charges relief agencies.

These companies profit from situations like this. This is their business case. What did you expect?

Mega Corpco - Helping people in need - just send us your donations and we'll eventually route them along, meanwhile being recognized for the fine work we've done. Thanks little nobody person for making it all possible. By the way, we get to write this PR campaign off, too. Great advertising, huh?

Re:Surprised? (1)

d0g_solitude (1994870) | about 3 years ago | (#35601910)

Damn mGive. Jeez. Just like the damn hospitals/police/fire department. When someone uses their services, they have the gall to actually expect payment. What the hell? Are we supposed to believe it actually costs THEM money to provide services? They don't need to pay their employees, or pay for their equipment or technology. We all know better. I can't believe the greed of all those mGive volunteers using their own computers and internet sites, using their own free time to handle these transactions, and then taking a small percentage for themselves. We all KNOW it costs you absolutely nothing to do this and you are all happy to work for free. [/sarcasm] Seriously. Do people think mGive does not incur any operating costs? What, are they funded by that free Obama money they were giving out in Detroit?

Re:Surprised? (2)

_0xd0ad (1974778) | about 3 years ago | (#35602048)

You don't seem to understand how non-profit organizations work.

A non-profit organization can still accept payment. It can still pay its employees. Its employees can even make a profit! The only thing that can't make a profit is the corporation itself. That means, if they're in the black at the end of the year, the money simply rolls into the next year. It isn't profit. It's just surplus. There are very tight restrictions on what they can do with the money. But paying their employees and buying equipment are certainly permitted uses of it, which is why it stinks of corruption when the people they're buying their technology from are simply themselves under the name of a different corporation, a for-profit corporation... mGive.com is a for-profit corp.

So ... (2)

WrongSizeGlass (838941) | about 3 years ago | (#35601414)

So we should text F' You! to mGive.com?

Re:So ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#35601500)

Yes. Preferably, using LOIC.

Re:So ... (1)

schnikies79 (788746) | about 3 years ago | (#35601566)

DOS attacks are the lowest form of internet protest.

Re:So ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#35601730)

DDOS being the superior form of internet protest.

Re:So ... (5, Informative)

ginbot462 (626023) | about 3 years ago | (#35601944)

My advice:

Charity Navigator [charitynavigator.org] or something similar. Reward efficiency (i.e. high % of dollar goes to actual cause). Sometimes though if you're trying to support a certain cause, it's hard to find a charity that ranks high.

Really quickly I see:
AmeriCares
International Relief Teams
Direct Relief International

Vultures (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#35601418)

There is nothing more despicable than those who gain from tragedy.

Re:Vultures (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#35601890)

Yeah, it is so wrong to sell cement, brick, glass and other construction material to anyone who got his house destroyed or damaged by "tragedy". Construction worker sicken me! And when i think of all the doctors, paid to heal peoples that got injured in a "tragedy", i feel so angry. Peoples that suffer from "tragedy" should be left alone. Think of the victims!

Don't you mean like ....? (1)

Kalidor (94097) | about 3 years ago | (#35601424)

Uhm, I thought the same thing happened for Haiti. Wasn't that why people on the news were advising against texting in donations?

Corporations (1)

Dyinobal (1427207) | about 3 years ago | (#35601436)

Shouldn't surprise you, a corporation has no reason to be ethical in a relief situation. Everyone can point at everyone else in the corporation, and still all reap some nice profits.

Re:Corporations (1)

MickyTheIdiot (1032226) | about 3 years ago | (#35601472)

Shouldn't surprise you, a corporation has no reason to be ethical in any situation.

FTFY

Re:Corporations (1)

chemicaldave (1776600) | about 3 years ago | (#35601520)

Shouldn't surprise you, a corporation has no reason to be ethical in any situation unless it boosts revenues.

FTFY

FTFY

Re:Corporations (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#35602082)

Exactly. Insurance companies have a strong incentive to be ethical and bring relief to their customers as quickly as possible, because otherwise the future for their company can be destroyed through negative word-of-mouth. Paying out quickly in the case of covered emergencies can be a big boon to future business.

Governments and (sometimes) nonprofits have no such incentives.

Re:Corporations (1)

ackthpt (218170) | about 3 years ago | (#35601772)

Shouldn't surprise you, a corporation has no reason to be ethical in a relief situation. Everyone can point at everyone else in the corporation, and still all reap some nice profits.

Yep, the interest the collection while sitting on your donation should give you further warm fuzzies. Want money to go to a charity? Go directly to the charity website, local office or mail them a donation. Corporate cooperation with charity gives them some sort of PR for being a middle-man. Sounds rather indecent when looked at that way, doesn't it?

Re:Corporations (1)

CFTM (513264) | about 3 years ago | (#35601972)

This reminds me very much of what I saw occur following the financial meltdown; suddenly every major retail outlet I shopped at was soliciting donations for the latest fad. At the end of every transaction at stores like Safeway and Target, I would be asked if I wanted to donate $2 to breast cancer awareness or prostate cancer awareness. And when I'd say no, invariably the clerk behind the register would give me a dirty look.

At the end of the day, I'm not so interested in giving my money to Safeway so that they can say they raised $2 million dollars for breast cancer awareness and then take a nice tax cut for being an "ethical" corporation.

Re:Corporations (2)

bws111 (1216812) | about 3 years ago | (#35602004)

The 'delay' seems to be the time between someone texting a donation, and the time the carriers give the money to mGive. The guy from mGive says that is 30 days. Are you suggesting that the carriers are earning interest on a text message? Until you pay your bill the carrier does not have the money, so they are not earning interest. It seems like what you really expect is the carriers to make an interest-free loan to mGive on your behalf, until such time as you get around to paying your bill. If you want to send money to someone in a hurry, texting is a pretty dumb way to do it. Fortunately, Japan does not need the money in a hurry (they need lots of help, but lack of immediate funds are not the problem).

Re:Corporations (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#35602088)

Mgive is a non-profit. But don't let facts get in the way of your bigotry.

Re:Corporations (1)

_0xd0ad (1974778) | about 3 years ago | (#35602162)

mGive Foundation is a non-profit organization.
mGive.com is a for-profit organization.

See how that works?

This sounds like a job for... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#35601462)

Anonymous!

Re:This sounds like a job for... (1)

denis-The-menace (471988) | about 3 years ago | (#35601668)

as tempting as it would be, Anonymous should not do a thing.
*we* should be making the media shine a light on the greed of mGive.com to shame them and their owners.

Why would any true geek text a donation? (3, Insightful)

xxxJonBoyxxx (565205) | about 3 years ago | (#35601476)

the easiest thing to do is to text a donation to our favorite relief organization

Why would any true geek text a donation? We're geeks. We want what's most EFFECTIVE, not what's easiest.

Re:Why would any true geek text a donation? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#35602056)

the easiest thing to do is to text a donation to our favorite relief organization

Why would any true geek text a donation? We're geeks. We want what's most EFFECTIVE, not what's easiest.

You say that as if you've never noticed the apparently strong Apple fanbase in the geek world...

Re:Why would any true geek text a donation? (1)

Duradin (1261418) | about 3 years ago | (#35602116)

I would say "true" geeks want convoluted and esoteric over effective.

As someone who works in mobile payments... (5, Informative)

Itesh (1901146) | about 3 years ago | (#35601478)

I wish there would be greater disclosure about this and many other things. It can take up to 3 months for the US, but some other countries such as Latin America and Asian countries not called China and Japan it can take up to 6 months. In the EU, some people don't have to pay their bill monthly, there are quarterly and bi-annual billing cycles. It's a shame, because if there was full disclosure many people would have donated via another method. Hopefully all this exposure will get them to declare this a "crisis" and get the funds moving immediately.

P.S. Please be careful when giving your child a cell phone, it's as easy to buy virtual goods with it as a credit card and companies like mine have no way of knowing that you have given it to your child. If you would like to block these types of purchases, contact your local wireless company and have them remove "Premium SMS" from your child's phone. I wish all wireless carriers were forced to disclose this whenever anyone purchases a "Family Plan".

Re:As someone who works in mobile payments... (1)

hedwards (940851) | about 3 years ago | (#35601720)

That's what I was wondering about. In order to give the money right now, the carriers would have to divert funds from elsewhere or take on debt to make it happen. The delay, or at least part of it, has to do with the time it takes them to collect the money that's been pledged. Then there's the time it takes to disburse the money and so it can easily take at least a month or two even without dragging ones feet.

OTOH, with CC donations directly to the organization they get the money or or less immediately because you end up paying the interest if you don't pay on time.

Re:As someone who works in mobile payments... (1)

Kral_Blbec (1201285) | about 3 years ago | (#35601884)

I fail to really see the problem. Not everything can be free and mgive needs money to continue operating. If it takes the cell companies time to collect payment in the billing cycle, its going to take time for that money to get moved over. Why should the cell company or mgive front the costs? For mgive its likely they dont have the assets to do so if they wanted to. Would people rather have no corporations with the ability to processes stuff like this?

Re:As someone who works in mobile payments... (1)

_0xd0ad (1974778) | about 3 years ago | (#35601928)

Not everything can be free and mgive needs money to continue operating.

Non-profits can take in money to continue operating. The difference is, if they have a surplus at the end of the year, they can't call it "profit" and award it as bonuses to their employees/shareholders.

mGive.com is a for-profit organization.

Immediate donation processing at philanthroper.com (0)

TrentTheThief (118302) | about 3 years ago | (#35601486)

donate via http://www.philathroper.com/ [philathroper.com]

Donations are processed and distributed immediately.

Re:Immediate donation processing at philanthroper. (3, Insightful)

DocSavage64109 (799754) | about 3 years ago | (#35601686)

I like the typo in the link. That's exactly how profiteers work -- by praying on the unwary. By the way, you can also paypal donations to Docsavage64109@gmail.com

Re:Immediate donation processing at philanthroper. (1)

SwordsmanLuke (1083699) | about 3 years ago | (#35601692)

Your link and your subject header don't match. I assume you meant this? [philanthroper.com]
Don't let it bother you though, you appear to be in good company: Google results [google.com] :)

Re:Immediate donation processing at philanthroper. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#35601708)

That's http://www.philanthroper.com/

Re:Immediate donation processing at philanthroper. (1)

afex (693734) | about 3 years ago | (#35602274)

"i'm a philan....philan....phil-on rapist" - charlie kelly

a lovely day in brussels, except for the tear gas (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#35601504)

the meetings are going well. there are even more meetings planned. the lunch was fit for kings. some terrific (if not new) stand-up was delivered. that's inside. what is that smell? is that babys, mommys? do they always smell like that? can't really see. are they all smoking?

Not only the carriers, also the NGO's (4, Informative)

elrous0 (869638) | about 3 years ago | (#35601570)

I've had a problem in the past with the Red Cross because they do not segregate donations to specific causes (or, at least, they haven't in the past). That means that if you make a donation to the Red Cross for the Japanese disaster, that doesn't mean that your money necessarily even goes to Japanese relief. And if there is any left over after their (often very limited) efforts, it goes back into their coffers--irrespective of how it was supposed to be earmarked.

My grandfather always used to tell me that he would die before he ever gave to the Red Cross. When he was in Korea, the Red Cross used to show up and sell soldiers coffee and donuts (at a profit, no less). No money meant no coffee and donuts for you, G.I.

I'm not disparaging their work (I don't know enough to comment on that). I'm just saying that they need to be much more upfront with people about where their money is actually going.

Re:Not only the carriers, also the NGO's (1)

bluefoxlucid (723572) | about 3 years ago | (#35601718)

This is of course the exact behavior that I prefer. I mean, you donate $300M to Haiti. Haiti is 70% stabilized in $120M, and it will take $20BN to make a full recovery. Now Chile gets hit; Chile is 70% stabilized in $150M, and they have $180M on hand BUT it's earmarked for Haiti. Red Cross knows the most effective way to use these funds is to immediately stabilize Chile, minimizing human life and livelihood loss in total; but it's not allowed to do so, and must wastefully spend money continuing to help Haiti.

Re:Not only the carriers, also the NGO's (1)

nomadic (141991) | about 3 years ago | (#35601902)

"and must wastefully spend money continuing to help Haiti." I guarantee you that in terms of Haiti specifically any money you spend in excess of what is required to repair hurricane damage is money well-spent.

Re:Not only the carriers, also the NGO's (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#35602046)

Diminishing returns. If you have all the money you need to fund disaster relief right after said disaster hits, you can save people that would've otherwise died while waiting. So yes, it would be wasteful. Haiti is already stable. Chile wasn't. Now Japan isn't.

Re:Not only the carriers, also the NGO's (1)

Manos_Of_Fate (1092793) | about 3 years ago | (#35602194)

Probably people in Chile wouldn't agree with that sentiment. Limited resources means making tough choices.

Re:Not only the carriers, also the NGO's (1)

gstoddart (321705) | about 3 years ago | (#35601732)

I've had a problem in the past with the Red Cross because they do not segregate donations to specific causes (or, at least, they haven't in the past).

After the tsunami in 2004 their web-site did allow you to earmark it specifically for that.

I have seen them do this on other campaigns as well.

Of course, that doesn't mean they use it all for the selected purpose or that it doesn't go into their general coffers afterwards.

Re:Not only the carriers, also the NGO's (4, Interesting)

joelsherrill (132624) | about 3 years ago | (#35601762)

My grandfather always used to tell me that he would die before he ever gave to the Red Cross. When he was in Korea, the Red Cross used to show up and sell soldiers coffee and donuts (at a profit, no less). No money meant no coffee and donuts for you, G.I.

My grandfather was in WWII and had the same feelings for the Red Cross for the reason. Never heard anyone else mention it.

Re:Not only the carriers, also the NGO's (1)

WillAdams (45638) | about 3 years ago | (#35601820)

My father made the same complaint of the Red Cross during Vietnam.

William

Re:Not only the carriers, also the NGO's (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#35602086)

Never heard anyone else mention it.

It was a widespread complaint of WW2. Here's a couple of links. Note while the Red Cross claims this was only a WW2 situation, but it's not hard to find Korea conflict vets complaining of direct experience with it. That needs more research.

see bottom
http://www.redcross.org/portal/site/en/menuitem.d229a5f06620c6052b1ecfbf43181aa0/?vgnextoid=d8b0f0454556e110VgnVCM10000089f0870aRCRD&vgnextchannel=477859f392ce8110VgnVCM10000030f3870aRCRD [redcross.org]

http://www.snopes.com/medical/emergent/redcross.asp [snopes.com]

Re:Not only the carriers, also the NGO's (1)

mcmonkey (96054) | about 3 years ago | (#35602208)

My grandfather always used to tell me that he would die before he ever gave to the Red Cross. When he was in Korea, the Red Cross used to show up and sell soldiers coffee and donuts (at a profit, no less). No money meant no coffee and donuts for you, G.I.

My grandfather was in WWII and had the same feelings for the Red Cross for the reason. Never heard anyone else mention it.

How many bees for a cup of coffee?

Re:Not only the carriers, also the NGO's (1)

DocSavage64109 (799754) | about 3 years ago | (#35601822)

For any large charity, there's a fair amount of staff and infrastructure to maintain. I'd be surprised if 50% of a donation makes it to the people in Japan.

Re:Not only the carriers, also the NGO's (1)

LurkerXXX (667952) | about 3 years ago | (#35601896)

I wasn't aware a function of the Red Cross was to give coffee and donuts to soldiers. I thought the army/navy/air force/marines were supposed to feed them.

I thought the red cross was supposed to supply food/medicine in emergencies or to POWs. Wanting coffee and a donut is not an emergency.

I don't put much stock in your grandfathers preferences there.

Re:Not only the carriers, also the NGO's (1)

elrous0 (869638) | about 3 years ago | (#35601950)

What REALLY irked him was the fact that the Red Cross used the "We're helping out our boys over there!" type advertising to solicit donations back in the U.S. So they would ask people to give money to help them with their troop relief efforts, then turn around and charge the troops for that relief. Oddly enough, none of their advertising ever adopted the slogans like "We're helping out our boys over there, if they pay!"

Re:Not only the carriers, also the NGO's (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#35602100)

What REALLY irked him was the fact that the Red Cross used the "We're helping out our boys over there!"

Yeah, screw the Red Cross; I'm going to Dunkin' Donuts instead. It's only 11 thousand km. Which way do I start swimming?

Re:Not only the carriers, also the NGO's (1)

elrous0 (869638) | about 3 years ago | (#35602406)

I think you might have felt differently if you had just walked out of some pretty nasty combat (often in very bitterly cold conditions) and been greeted by a Red Cross truck asking you for pony up for a cup of coffee or get nothing--especially if you found out that they were putting up posters back home asking people to donate so they could help out the troops. I'm not saying that troops should be given everything they want for free (it's not like Pizza Hut food service contractors in Iraq let them eat for free, after all). But the Red Cross, in pairing their charitable efforts with (what appeared to the troops to be) a profit-making monopoly, made a *huge* PR fuck-up that left behind a lot of very bitter soldiers and marines. It seemed dishonest. And it was hardly the last time they would have to deal with allegations of dishonesty.

Re:Not only the carriers, also the NGO's (2)

_0xd0ad (1974778) | about 3 years ago | (#35602120)

I'm pretty sure the "help" they were giving was more in the line of providing medical necessities. Selling coffee and donuts to the soldiers was probably considered fund-raising to help offset their real costs.

Re:Not only the carriers, also the NGO's (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#35601898)

Doctors Without Borders (MSF) also doesn't let segregate donations to certain causes, for the reason that if there is an emergency they can send sending help to that part of the world right away, without having to wait for people to earmark money for that country. And specifically the American Red Cross has had trouble in the past decade getting "too many" donations earmarked for September 11th victims and not being able to use that money for other disasters and purposes: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_Red_Cross#September_11_controversy

Coffee and Donuts (5, Interesting)

StikyPad (445176) | about 3 years ago | (#35601940)

The Red Cross sold coffee and donuts instead of giving them away to military personnel during World War II.
This unfortunate policy came into being because service agencies in Britain helping British military personnel were less well-financed than the American Red Cross. Thus, these agencies were forced to charge British military members for the same items that American service members were getting free from the American Red Cross.

To avoid further embarrassment to the British, who were playing host to thousands of U.S. troops, the U.S. Secretary of War requested that the American Red Cross begin charging American service members for such items as coffee and donuts in its canteens. The Red Cross interpreted this request as a wartime demand and complied so that it could continue aiding U.S. troops. However, the Red Cross sold items at or below cost and never profited a penny from these sales.

Since the end of World War II, the American Red Cross has not charged military personnel -- not in the Korean, Vietnam, or Persian Gulf conflicts, for example.
-- http://www.redcross.org [redcross.org]

Re:Coffee and Donuts (1)

elrous0 (869638) | about 3 years ago | (#35602074)

Well, according to grandpa they did it in Korea too, And I've heard a few other Korean vets echo that too, when I was growing up. He called the trucks that would bring them in "Donut Dollies" and was particularly pissed about his buddies who didn't have the money (he said he used to try to help them out unless he was broke too). He was still pissed about the whole thing decades later.

Re:Not only the carriers, also the NGO's (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#35602094)

The even bigger issue is that people donating to the AMERICAN Red Cross won't be making it's way to the JAPANESE Red Cross. Sucks the only way to donate to Japan's Red Cross is through direct Bank transfer, but Japan doesn't really believe in all these transfer methods that have middle men taking their cut.

http://www.jrc.or.jp/english/relief/l4/Vcms4_00002070.html

Re:Not only the carriers, also the NGO's (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#35602128)

I'm not disparaging their work

You contradict yourself.

their (often very limited) efforts

Re:Not only the carriers, also the NGO's (1)

elrous0 (869638) | about 3 years ago | (#35602198)

Even they acknowledge that they have often have to limit their services based on time, access, prioritization of other efforts, etc. I don't see that as disparaging.

My favorite part... (4, Informative)

Overzeetop (214511) | about 3 years ago | (#35601618)

"Note, too, that when you typically text a donation, the organization receiving it has to pay a transaction fee which may or may not be passed along to you on your bill. The mGive Foundation is a non-profit, that charges nothing to certify a charity to the carriers. The carriers forward 100% of the donation amount to the charitable organization. But both the carrier and the similarly named "mGive.com" may still charge a transaction fee. mGive.com is a for-profit arm of the company Mobile Accord. It runs the technology involved in taking text donations (and performing other mobile fundraising campaigns for non-profits). In addition to setup fees and monthly fees it charges a per transaction fee of $0.35 + 3.5 %."

So mGive Foundation - the one you'll probably find if you do an internet search, is a non-profit who will certify the charity and tell you that 100% of the donation goes to the cause, but mGive.com - a separate entity - is for profit and takes their cut off of the top, then forwarding the remaining "donation" to be sent along. Nice. I wonder which MBA thought that one up. Whoever he is, he's probably sitting on a beach somewhere safe, sipping a Mai Tai right now.

Re:My favorite part... (5, Funny)

arf_barf (639612) | about 3 years ago | (#35601926)

> Whoever he is, he's probably sitting on a beach somewhere safe, sipping a Mai Tai right now.

Where is a Tsunami when you need one ;-) ?

That's bureaucracy for you (1)

Zandamesh (1689334) | about 3 years ago | (#35601644)

First comment on on that site:

It is unfortunate that the petition – and the premise of this story – is based on misunderstanding.

The mGive Foundation has worked with its wireless carrier partners to implement solutions that will accelerate the transmittal of text donations; in some cases, wireless operators can remit donations in as little as 30 days. The misconception that our carrier partners are holding back any of these much-needed funds has, unfortunately, gone viral. We want to ensure that this misunderstanding is corrected, and does not hamper people’s willingness to give at a time when Japan needs it most.

Our wireless carrier partners are committed to enabling nonprofits with mobile technology, and have generously donated their networks, business support, technical resources, and in many cases messaging fees to support these campaigns. When donors text in a donation, they are pledging to pay this donation when they receive their monthly bill from their wireless carrier. Upon remittance, the carrier in turn forwards those dollars to us, and we then pass 100 percent of the money raised to our nonprofit partners.

Likewise, our nonprofit partners have dedicated their resources to Japan Tsunami Relief efforts and, to date, the outpouring of generosity and support from Americans has been tremendous. These organizations are led by skilled professionals who are experienced in dealing with large-scale disasters, and have the insight to know when to request accelerated payments from wireless carriers, as they did in the case of Haiti. To date no such request has been made, but that in no way diminishes the devastation in Japan.

Together, our nonprofit and carrier partners are harnessing the power of mobile giving to ensure that Japanese citizens receive – unequivocally and in as timely a manner as possible – all the funds that Americans have given so generously to date. It would be a shame for misinformation perpetuated by stories like this to hamper these efforts.

Jenifer Snyder
Executive Director
The mGive Foundation

Btw, Americans want to help? You're not the only ones on the world you know. Yes yes, it's an American article, but you could have changed the text in the headline at least.

Internet! I Choose You! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#35601666)

So who is behind mgive.com? Isn't this the perfect opportunity to demonstrate the power of the Internet to do what it excels at? Namely, going viral on some punks?

Re:Internet! I Choose You! (2)

LurkerXXX (667952) | about 3 years ago | (#35601992)

No, what the internet excels at is spreading of myths and FUD by people who can't be bothered to get the basic facts straight before 'going viral on some punks'. This is a nice example of that. Read the post above yours.

Could be worse, could be eBay Giving (5, Interesting)

ackthpt (218170) | about 3 years ago | (#35601672)

The day the Tsunami hit I scampered out the door to give a pint of blood. Later that day I thought of putting a item on an eBay auction to raise some fundage for American Red Cross. Ebay listing page allowed me to pick a charity and a percentage to go there. Wonderful. The listing was published and had a big banner about the Red Cross added to it.

After the auction ended the trouble began. The buyer paid and I found the money sitting in my PayPal account, with their customary cut removed from it. WTF?!? I drop a note to PayPal that this must be some sort of error, the money should have gone straight to American Red Cross. No reply, typical.

Then I get on the online support with someone and tell them about it and ask them to send the answer to my email (the one I provided) and again I get nothing. Bother.

Finally over the weekend I spend 2.5 hours waiting through the queue for help by apparently the only on-line customer support person they had working (this smells like the business model: we have few complaints to our customer support so satisfaction must be nearly 100%, but I digress) It is finally explained to me that I had to set up a Mission Fish account first so the payment would have been routed to them. Excuse me? You let me list an item where 100% was to go to a registered charity, but didn't establish a precondition of publishing the listing that the Mission Fish account be set up first, while the charity logo and mission are splashed all over a listing - yet the payment for it can completely bypass the charity? Hello, this looks like enabling Donor Fraud.

I finally have had enough of their stupidity and go over to American Red Cross website and donate directly, including the sum I received for the auctioned item. I'm beside myself with the stupidity of corporations, but with eBay this is nothing new. Since 1999 they've gone from good to bad to worse.

Be wary of donating via eBay. No guarantee the funds you pay do go where you think.

This is why I never donate (1)

SilverJets (131916) | about 3 years ago | (#35601678)

It never goes to the intended need anyways. If it is not lining someone's pocket it gets slapped with administrative costs, etc.

Charity has to be the next biggest scam to organized religion.

Re:This is why I never donate (1)

ackthpt (218170) | about 3 years ago | (#35601858)

It never goes to the intended need anyways. If it is not lining someone's pocket it gets slapped with administrative costs, etc.

Charity has to be the next biggest scam to organized religion.

That's rather unfair. I'm a volunteer myself and often give. I usually do it directly, which is the best way to see it gets where it's needed.

Re:This is why I never donate (4, Funny)

mcmonkey (96054) | about 3 years ago | (#35602390)

That's rather unfair. I'm a volunteer myself and often give. I usually do it directly, which is the best way to see it gets where it's needed.

Whenever I donate to the local single mothers and young women working their way through college, I always do so directly. I usually place the dollar right in her g-string, which is the best way to see it gets where it's needed.

Re:It never goes to the intended need anyways. (1)

DocSavage64109 (799754) | about 3 years ago | (#35602034)

I wouldn't say that about all charities. I work at a large non-profit daycare / before & after school program / family services that was started by two nuns, and granted the majority of money goes to staff and facilities, the staff and facilities are what benefit the children, families, and employees all at the same time. I think the difference is that we're all paid very poorly and nobody is getting rich off the system over here -- even our CEO (The nuns now hold honorary and speaking roles as they are in their late 60s+) just drives a Nissan Altima.

Re:This is why I never donate (1)

RealGrouchy (943109) | about 3 years ago | (#35602388)

It never goes to the intended need anyways. If it is not lining someone's pocket it gets slapped with administrative costs, etc.

Yes, heaven forbid there might be administrative overhead to coordinating with foreign governments to send volunteers with supplies to disaster areas.

And you're right, it never goes to the intended need. Ever. All those rescuers, firefighters, people distributing goods to and providing temporary shelters in disaster-stricken areas, they're all sent by profit-hungry corporations.

The people you see on the news giving out aid or searching for survivors are all just paid actors to make you want to give them money.

(You'd better hope you're never in a situation where you need support from charities to recover from a natural/manmade/accidental/political/medical disaster.)

- RG>

Make Profit Before Passing The Money Over (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#35601764)

3 Months is enough time to put all the donation money in a CD and earn interest on it, before passing the principle on to the charity.

Japan (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#35601770)

Japan is a rich, technologically advanced, first-world country. I feel very bad for the people who have been affected by the recent events there, it's truly awful... but there are so many poor countries with horrible conditions, lack of food, basic human rights... who need money much more than Japan. ALL THE TIME.

If you really want to help Japan, go there and start digging through the mess and help them rebuild. If you want to donate money, donate to someone who actually needs money. Or donate in general to the Red Cross or other groups, without earmarking your money for Japan where it will sit for months or more, while thousands of people die of starvation in other parts of the world, maybe even in your own damn country.

facilitating death using fake (usury) math (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#35601946)

that should work? we see there's a nazi mutuant stand-up guy for that too.

fortunately the japanese may choose to delay any response to the treatment they've received thus far. it's the newclear way. as for the kings/minions, depopulators, weapons peddlers, media fear/war mongerers, fake weather/seismic induction 'scientists', eugenatics, georgia stome fake math fanatics etc... they're betting heavy (with our money) on themselves. maybe OUR religious training is flawed? our 'math' is definitely screwball? the 'calendar'? guess our best? key words; play-dates, photons, survive, thrive,

Make it a story. (1)

Charliemopps (1157495) | about 3 years ago | (#35601976)

The best way to stop this nonsense is to make it a huge story. Twitter it, facebook it, whatever... post it everywhere. The media doesn't care unless they think the people do. So make it go viral so the worthless people we call "the press" cover it... then all the companies involved will look like idiots and may fix it.

Re:Make it a story. (1)

ackthpt (218170) | about 3 years ago | (#35602018)

The best way to stop this nonsense is to make it a huge story. Twitter it, facebook it, whatever... post it everywhere. The media doesn't care unless they think the people do. So make it go viral so the worthless people we call "the press" cover it... then all the companies involved will look like idiots and may fix it.

I think that only applies to politicians using Craigslist.

Non-profits like mGive make profits... (1)

billrp (1530055) | about 3 years ago | (#35602126)

Although they are a 501c3, a "non-profit" like mGive are allowed to pay their staff and directors huge salaries, fees, and expenses. The non-profit entity itself does not "make money". And the mGive Exec. Director is shrewd: "..we then pass 100 percent of the money raised to our nonprofit partners". But he doesn't say: and then we immediately send the "partner" an invoice for our expenses.
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