Who’s Getting Rich Off Profit-Driven 'Clicktivism'

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posted on Aug, 12 2014 @ 01:04 PM
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MOTHERBOARD - Who's Getting Rich Off Profit-Driven 'Clicktivism'

This article raises quite a few questions that need better answers. Please read linked article, its not that long.


The ubiquitous web petition. Chances are, you've recently clicked one. Maybe it was from your favorite nonprofit's email list or Facebook page, allowing you to take "action" in one second. Or perhaps you found it on the web's major petition site, Change.org. To click may seem like an innocent act, harmless and, perhaps, if more people sign, influential. But did you know that behind each click or "like" is a multimillion-dollar industry thriving on the commodification and monetization of those clicks? And despite the grand rhetoric to the contrary, clicktivism’s social impact is, thus far, uncertain.

Make no mistake, online petitions are a business too. In fact, the financial model of Change.org, which reportedly has revenue in the millions, mimics those of Silicon Valley startups. Offer something for free, then sell preferential access. "Sponsored" petitions are highlighted on the site, and what Change.org offers clients is its audience: some 75 million names, who are nudged, through emails, social media, and other methods, to sign those petitions.

With each click, Change.org makes a profit, and increases its clientele base. Clients are often organizations with deep pockets; Amnesty International, Sierra Club, and even the Democratic Party.


[...]


In the end, Change.org staff choose which petitions get featured—often, the ones that get clicks. We’re left to trust that their leadership, staff, and CEO will use the organization’s millions in revenue to, as a spokesperson said "empower users [beyond petitions], such as being able to contribute resources or money to a project, being able to contribute 'time' potentially through things like volunteering, and contribute their civic activity, such as voting."

The company would not release its financial reports, so there's no way of knowing how many (or how much) clients pay for sponsored petitions. It also would not release any specific data on how the company is investing in these forms of social impact, nor how much goes to management salaries, though Rattray has an estimated wealth of $2 million.




posted on Aug, 12 2014 @ 01:21 PM
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"sucker born every minute"...comes to mind....my little story, my wife and I are getting hit up over the phone (land line) for personal information several times a week. I simply hang up...also, I now never order anything online, I get the direct phone number and talk to a real person. my computer contains no bank, credit card, or monied account information....and for the last few months, both of us have received unsolicited calls from some heavily-indian-accented person representing himself as being from Microsoft...for those who are completely in the dark, companies such as Microsoft do not do that. do not give money over the phone to a charity that calls you, nor anyone that says they have some type of relationship with you or a family member.....get the phone number/name/address/company from them, and check to make sure its legit.



posted on Aug, 12 2014 @ 04:34 PM
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a reply to: CloudsTasteMetallic

Change.org is garbage. Nothing comes from those petitions. It's just a way for people to feel like they've done something without actually doing anything.



posted on Aug, 12 2014 @ 10:16 PM
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a reply to: CloudsTasteMetallic

Interesting but highly biased - what about other 'clickactivist' outfilts? Is there just the one? I know there are more..... why only mention the one.

I agree, it's relativly cheap money (like ATS) for a few but some realistic scope would be appreciated.



posted on Aug, 12 2014 @ 10:21 PM
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a reply to: CloudsTasteMetallic

Got anymore?

Lots of exterior input but none of yours.

Peace



posted on Aug, 12 2014 @ 11:15 PM
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originally posted by: jude11
a reply to: CloudsTasteMetallic

Got anymore?

Lots of exterior input but none of yours.

Peace


Actually, I don't feel informed enough on this subject to really contribute much. Just read this article earlier, found it interesting, and thought I'd share with everyone to start a discussion. Work has been kicking my butt lately, and less time for research.

@FyreByrd, I agree it is quite biased towards only change.org, however the chart shown in the link is somwhat illustrative of why. They've become basically a monopoly on petitions like these.

edit on 8122014 by CloudsTasteMetallic because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 13 2014 @ 09:48 PM
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This means people will just have to go back to making a difference in person in their own community. That's not actually a bad thing, although there may me lots of internal pep talking to get it done involved.





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