Remaking the charity biz, Web 2.0-style

Austin Hill — a smart guy who founded the company that eventually became Radialpoint, and writes a venture-capital oriented blog called Billions With Zero Knowledge — has put together what he hopes will become a Web 2.0-style charity called Gifter, and launched it with a “million-dollar blog post.” For every wish that is submitted, $1 will be donated to charity.

You can also sponsor a wish by donating $1 or more to Gifter (props to Austin for keeping all the vowels in the name, unlike most other Web 2.0 outfits). There’s an explanation of how things work here, including a description of how you can use online charity tools such as Tom Williams’ excellent, as well as (another of Austin’s ventures, called Project Ojibwe, has sponsored 2,500 wishes).

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Coincidentally enough, Muhammad Saleem of The Mu Life and a partner just launched a website called Socially Given, where they are also hoping to use Web 2.0-type community tools to bring together people who want to contribute. Their idea stemmed from a post on Digg, in which Valleywag said it would donate $10 every time its “Diggbait” posts made it to the front page — and Muhammad calculated that this would bring in far more in advertising profits than would be given to charity.

Cambrian House, the Calgary-based “crowdsourcing” software-development company (which I wrote about here), also has a socially-driven charity effort of sorts called Robinhood Fund, in which people pay $5 to submit a wish, and then the community votes on who should receive the money collected each month. Past recipients have included a woman who needed medication for her sister’s Parkinson’s disease.

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