Social Good: A look at online charity donating

Here at Online Social Media we do love a good infographic and just some of the ones we’ve seen lately include a comparison between Farmville and real-life farmers, one which showed all the privacy issues surrounding Facebook in its history, and another which displayed social networking use. In case you’re not familiar with the term ‘infographic’, put simply it’s a way of displaying data and statistics in a pictorial way that makes the information easier to digest.

This time we have news of another stunning infographic from Shane Snow over at Mashable called, “Social Good: Charity and Technology in the Online Universe,” which displays the concept of social good and online charitable giving along with comparisons to offline giving. The results show that online giving is clearly on the up and increasingly important to social good.

For example if you look at U.S charitable giving in 2009 the infographic shows that the total was $303 billion of which online donations made up $15 billion. Now this may not seem like much of the proportion given but then take a look at statistics just for online giving. In 1997 the total for online giving was just $300,000 but by 2007, just ten years later that amount had grown to $10,400,000. Compare that again to 2009, and that amount had leapt by half as much again, to $15,400,000. That’s a hugely significant rise in just 2 years.

Another of the points made used the example of the Haiti earthquake in January 2010 when the Red Cross launched a text message donation system of $10 for each text sent. By August 3 million people had donated a total of $32 million but the staggering statistic regarding this is that 95% of those who donated in this way were first-time donors. This clearly shows that using technology for charitable giving will be a field that will encourage more people to donate and appeal to a wider spectrum of people.

For more on this and to see the full infographic go to mashable.com. We’d be interested to know if you’ve donated online or with a text message perhaps, when you may not have done so previously? Does the ease of making a technological donation encourage you to give? Why not send us your comments on this as we’re always interested to hear what you think.