Thursday, April 24, 2008 uGive?

From time to time I've come across links on charity websites about shopping online in a way that somehow raises money for them, but it wasn't until I stumbled across that I bothered to figure out what that actually entailed.

You sign up. You pick your charity. You download an invisible toolbar that detects when you're on a retail partner's site. You shop. The sites turn over a pre-determined percentage of your purchase to iGive, and that money is passed onto your charity of choice on a monthly basis. This is FREE. Totally and completely FREE. This is not money that you have the option of claiming for yourself, it's a FREE bonus. Did I mention it's FREE MONEY??

How this affects your computer....

You get an email from "Betty at iGive" a few times a week, announcing things like double donation days and stuff like that. I've noticed no increase or change in spam, and I've been registered for 5 months (you're welcome, Doctors Without Borders). You get a pop-up window whenever you visit an affiliated website that announces the contribution they make. Most of the biggies are on it, on both sides of the coin - Amazon, Overstock, Staples, eBay, Orbitz, etc. for the retailers, Anyway, that's it.

I've learned to shut up about most of my "adventures in charitable giving", as I explore the best fits for my personality. I get laughed at, or it makes people feel bad that they just don't care about this sort of thing. But this one gets a decent reception - even my mom didn't shoot me down in 5 seconds or less. I just sent her an online invitation. I mean, who doesn't like a completely effortless feelgood. And it's FREE.

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