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Philanthropy…Gone Viral

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Over the past three months we have read about the emerging trend of crowdsourced philanthropy. We have seen corporations turn to crowdsourcing as a way to better engage the public in their philanthropic efforts, and have watched as CharityBribes.org has harnessed the power of celebrity (and technology) for good. But what happens when philanthropy goes viral?

Philanthropy gone viral is exactly what happened as the Internet world watched the heartbreaking video of students harassing bus monitor Karen Klein. In response, “random people on the internet” have opened not just their hearts but their wallets to the tune of $681,000. Last week on Internet news blog Mashable, Matt Petronzio examined viral philanthropy and the ways people are increasingly engaging with charities through social media.

In the article, Petronzio examines a number of campaigns that have utilized Facebook, Twitter, and Reddit to raise tens (and sometimes hundreds) of thousands of dollars. He also looks at some of the most popular crowdfunding platforms available today including Kiva, Kickstarter, and Indiegogo.

“Social media and crowdfunding can change the way that people connect with the causes or passions they believe in,” Slava Rubin, the founder and CEO of Indiegogo, told Petronzio.” I think we’ve moved from a world of transactions to a world of relationships.”

Read more about viral philanthropy on Mashable.com to learn about recent successful Internet philanthropic movements.