Sunday, January 30, 2011


I get it. It's impossible to donate money when you don't have any. I totally get it. But you know what? You can still make a difference.

Check out Philanthroper. Every day, they share the story of a new 501(c)3 nonprofit and if you like it, you can give them $1. Yes...$1. That's it. They figure that if you make tiny donations - even $1 - on a regular basis, you'll donate more over time than you would have otherwise. Plus, it won't sting your bank account too badly. It's a brilliant strategy to make doing good a habit.

What's more, they never take a fee from any user donation. And charities don't pay to be featured on the site, either. The payment system that they use, mPayy, takes 1% of your donation - a penny - to cover unavoidable banking fees. So, $.99 out of every dollar goes directly to their featured charities. And you can suggest charities to them, too.

Listen, I know this is something everyone can afford to do. And if you can't, well, you let me know and I will send you the dollar to get started. Best dollar I will have ever spent. (Caveat: I don't think this here ol' blog has quite a big enough readership to get me into trouble with that statement, but I promise to stick to it. I would, however, greatly appreciate it if you could make an honest effort to scrape together the buck, if you can. Thanks.)


  1. UPDATE:

    Here's a message from Mark Wilson, Founder of Philanthroper.

    "Fellow Philanthropers,
    We have good news and bad news.

    First, the bad news. Philanthroper will be freezing operations for the next few weeks. We've prided ourselves for not having a single down day since our launch three months ago, but it's unavoidable.

    Philanthroper's formerly-exclusive payment processor, mPayy, is being acquired by another company. Their new buyer has absolutely no interest in subsidizing donations on our site so they're pulling out immediately.

    Unfortunately, mPayy gave us no notice - we literally heard about this development yesterday afternoon (Monday, April 25th) so we've had no time to accomodate our users. The irony? Last Friday was our most successful campaign ever.

    So what's the good news?

    Well, it WAS going to be a surprise, but we've been in the process of setting up PayPal-based donations, which will allow us to take credit cards and accept international payments.

    Yup, that's right, we're getting PayPal!

    And if anyone has friends at the company who might expedite the 5-10 day approval process, please email me at

    See you soon."


    Good news everyone! Philanthroper is back!

    After a few weeks of downtime, we've relaunched Philanthroper with PayPal at its core, allowing everyone everywhere to donate $1 via bank account or credit card.

    Once you link your PayPal account with Philanthroper (an option coming later this week), you will be able to make $1 donations to a new nonprofit every day with the push of a button.

    Note that PayPal's new fee to move donations will be 10%, but that includes all types of payment options. The best thing you can do to get that rate down is to continue giving and spreading the word about Philanthroper! (Also, if we can continue to find donation matchers just once every two weeks, we essentially nullify this rate.)

    So what about your old mPayy account? Consider it retired. Last we heard from mPayy, they have decided to completely withdraw from the consumer payments market while seeking other business opportunities.

    One other piece of news to those still reading: we have a new feature called a Stats page. You see, we've been keeping tabs on all user activity since we launched in late January so that you could have a record of how often you've given and to what types of causes. We think it's like Nike+ or Runkeeper for doing good, with a lot of fun features yet to come. We hope you enjoy sharing your pages with one another, but keep in mind, if you'd like that information to stay private, we offer the option to hide your stats from public view (and we will continue to do so).

    Thank-you so much for being a part of Philanthroper. More than ever, we're excited to get back to work. There's a whole lot of good we can do together. that all of that is said and done, we're going to have to ask you for $1.

    Mark Wilson


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