I don’t want your help because you won’t give me enough of it. WHAT?

August 20, 2009

Thursday night I got home from playing poker and laid out my plans for Friday.

I’ve got a taping for LUNCH at 2PM and a few errands to run around town. But because it is a summer Friday I had already built in a  little free time.

Most Friday afternoons I wander over to HubSpotTV for the 4PM show or grab a bench on the waterfront to people-watch and drink iced coffee. Tomorrow is atypical for a summer Friday as it’s got a few social media events on the schedule.

First is some sort of cookout in the middle of the day up in Lincoln, NH or Lincoln, MA or somewhere named after Abe.

The second is a Mashable-organized event called the #Hyatt4Good Tweetup Tour. Here’s how it’s described on Mashable’s site…

Over the past several weeks we’ve been on the #Hyatt4Good Tweetup Tour raising money for the the Summer of Social Good charity fund. We’ve had the great pleasure of meeting a lot of you so far and we have one stop left, Boston, before next week’s Social Good Conference. From the tour alone, we’ve raised over $6,500. Thank you all for coming, a big thanks to Hyatt for the beautiful venues for the events and we look forward to seeing you in Boston or at the Social Good Conference.The Boston event features: Appetizers, Cash Bar, Skype Giveaways, Fiesta Movement Agent’s offering rides to and from, Make sure to RSVP for Charity (100% of ticket sales are being donated to the Summer of Social Good fund).

Sounds like a good time. A little party, a little socializing, a little drinking and some charity tossed in for good measure. I love the idea. SO I went over to sign up for the event and saw that it was $20 per ticket. Not a big deal, but there was an option for people who had already donated to the Summer of Social Good.

I went to their site to see what that was all about.

There I found their four charities – one of which I really agree with and three that I’m less inclined to contribute to. And I also found a donate page. This is what started me on this rant.

This year I worked for a charity – I should say volunteered – that collected $100,000 for charity. We did this by focusing on making it easy for our audiences to give money.

Similar to Obama’s campaign, we didn’t turn down any donation amount. If you wanted to give us a nickel, we’d take it. It all goes to the cause and every little bit helps.

Not so for Summer of Social Good. See this screen shot…


Do you see what it says up top? That’s right…

If you want to make a donation to this project, please select or enter how much you would like to donate. The minimum donation is $10.

Excuse me? Is it too difficult to take $2, $5, $9.50 from people that you just ignore anyone who can’t spring for $10 or more? In the midst of the 2nd-most devastating economic downturn in my lifetime you’re refusing to take people’s micro-payments?

Isn’t social media great because it’s participatory?

What happens to the large chunk of social media folks who might want to support your causes but can only afford to give you $3 because they don’t have jobs?

Maybe they could scrape together a couple bucks for you, but your group refuses to take their cash because it’s not in a high-enough denomination?

That’s just silly.

There’s a lot of “rah rah rah, aren’t we great because we’re using social media tools to raise money” going on all around us. It’s admirable that so many people are involved and that causes are being helped.

But when it comes to making the decision not to accept help because it doesn’t match your criteria, you’re just shortchanging your organization – and literally shortchanging the people and organizations you’re hoping to help.

Keep reading!