Getting Donations via Twitter
by Ashley High
While Facebook recently added its millionth user, the real buzz is about Twitter. According to TechCrunch, Twitter’s latest usage is philanthropy. While the Washington Post says Facebook’s “Causes” application has not delivered the anticipated results, “tweetraising” (Twitter fundraising), has already shown results.
Twitter is able to rapidly spread information, and that may be one of the causes of its success. For example, in November 2008, tweetgiving raised over $10,000 in 48 hours for the construction of a new classroom in Tanzania. Then, on February 12, 2009, charity:water raised $250,000 to bring safe drinking water to developing countries. Network for Good created the “tweet4good”profile. Twitter users write a message with a dollar sign before the name of their charity or cause (for example, $autism), then, the user receives a direct message with a donation link.
Twitter’s own long-term fundraising project, the Twollars Project, gives 50 “twollars” (online Twitter money), to every Twitter user. These twollars can be used to thank helpful Twitter users, or can be donated to the various charities listed on the website. In turn, the charities can redeem the twollars for real money.
A report by Forrester Research estimates that by 2012 there will be 2.2 billion Internet users worldwide. By then (if not now), charities will have to be on the Internet and on social media sites.
Source: Roberto Azula. “Twittering for a Cause: Web 2.0 and Its Philanthropic Impact.” 27 July 2009. The Daily Tell. 31 July 2009. <www.thedailytell.com>.