GIVER BEWARE! If you're gonna give, don't get taken.
October 10, 2001 4:47 PM   Subscribe

GIVER BEWARE! If you're gonna give, don't get taken. The New York branch of the Better Business Bureau has some useful material on how to spot scams over legitimate charities. "As awful as it sounds, there may be those that seek to profit from this misery." Useful tips and information are also available at Give.Org, the Urban Legends Resource Center and the Internet Fraud Complaint Center. Maybe I'm just too cynical, but even the legitimate charities sound like scams to me. Why are there so many "disaster relief funds" forming? Wouldn't it be easier if there was just one place to give? Why all these middlemen?
posted by ZachsMind (6 comments total)
Wouldn't it be easier if there was just one place to give?

There is at, or through amazon or paypal. I wouldn't trust anyone else online.
posted by mathowie at 4:52 PM on October 10, 2001

Duh... American Red Cross... duh duh duh... why would you give to anyone else anyway?

Sure, there are charities that you may connect with on a more personal, political, or spiritual level, but if you're that picky, wouldn't you already be sure that whoever you're giving to is legit? Of course, that means whoever's being taken in is that much more of a sucker. What a shame.
posted by techgnollogic at 8:27 PM on October 10, 2001

i think that the multitude of charities related to the sept. 11 attacks are springing up for several reasons:

one, i'm guessing that lots of people want to boost their own egos a bit and feel that they are "doing something" (other than just donating)

two, some charities are applying their donations to different ends (remember the Joan Rivers dropping out of that benefit because it wasn't going to victims of the attack, but to promote racial tolerance?)

three, it's good PR... sadly, i'm starting to get sick of seeing the same tired condolence message on the majority of commercial web sites i go to
posted by nyomi at 8:52 PM on October 10, 2001

If it's sincere, how can it be tired?
posted by Irontom at 4:40 AM on October 11, 2001

Charities: Driven by Need, Not Centrally Monitored : NY Times today. "...donations are also piling up because many of the new relief funds still do not have the basic elements of governance in place, such as boards of directors, mission statements, written standards. Distribution has also been slowed by uncertainty about what victims will receive from the Federal Victims Compensation Fund, and concern that pledges may be substantially greater than actual receipts. When donations have been distributed so far, the process has sometimes been haphazard, and money has occasionally gone to those fortunate to know a relative or friend in a relief group."
posted by Carol Anne at 8:05 AM on October 11, 2001

Quite frankly, I don't see the point of giving at all to any of these WTC relief funds. All these funds already recieved millions, if not billions of dollars. My question is, where is that money going? Personally, it is not my goal to make millionares out of those who survived the attack.

There's plenty of people in need. WTC survivors--right now--are the last on the list for me.
posted by Witold at 10:56 AM on October 11, 2001

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