Thursday, June 11, 2015

Earth to NGOs

I received another email today from an environmental group that commanded me to 'tell someone not to do something."  I am a member of the board of that group and I was appalled.  I also regularly get missives on email saying I must meet some unsupported deadline for stopping catastrophe by sending in just five dollars to make a difference.  Or the world may end.

Just stop this silly shit.  It doesn't work and makes the movement look sophomoric.  If you want my five dollars then say,  "We need to raise money to save a river.  Can you send five dollars?"  Don't say, "if  you don't send five dollars by next Tuesday to meet our goal to save a river then we have failed the future!"  Who set that deadline?  Would my five dollars save the river within the next five days?

I want to save the river, but I don't want to be treated like an idiot!  Sometimes I think the well meaning fund raisers at non profit organizations have been reading too many comments on facebook.

4 comments:

Bubba Muntzer said...

I wonder too what the "well meaning fundraisers" are thinking sometimes. I think your suggestion that they read too many Facebook comments is probably it. Perhaps they get themselves immersed in the outpouring of "clutter" that is the media and feel they have to outshout it. My inbox gets full of similar emails and at many web sites now a donate page pops up first and you're forced to fight your way through it to get to the story you're looking for.

At the risk of sounding trite, at the other end of the spectrum is a web site I link to on my web log, Watching America, where volunteers translate the world press. I really like that web site and have followed them for maybe five years and recall one request for funds during that time. I got a mind to donate some money to them last week and found a donate link on their page. It's kind of inconspicuous. The next day the director sent me a several paragraph email in the style of formal correspondence thanking me personally and saying how he remembered the last time I donated.

Getting back to the point though, it seems to me to be a matter of either having faith in peoples' generosity and good sense, or not. Like you say.

Bruce Shah said...

Thanks! Same nonsense that is sent about all candidates and their actions. The sky is falling, the sky is falling...

Anonymous said...

Martin Heinrich must use the same fund raising email service because I am sick of getting his emails to save his career from the GOP or Koch brothers.

Vicki said...

Such appeals to "my urgent action" are also used to validate or obtain email addresses for future appeals (I wonder how often my "signing a petition" ends up with the sale of my email to other users). These constant appeals to my "In Box" get deleted now before I even read them because I get so many every day they are just "so much noise" like all the robo calls I get on my landline and the junk mail I get and, frankly, I suffer from "donor fatigue". Seems everytime I give, I get 10 more appeals for more money. A couple of months ago, I decided that I will donate a consistent sum of money every month through an automatic draft from my checking account to support the NM State Democratic Party. Yesterday I received mail appeal from the NM State Chair: "I need to know right away: Are you in?" and asking for an immediate donation.