What Happened to CharitableWay?
2 April 2001 at 1:04 pm
Philanthropic forums across the Internet have been flooded with discussions about the closure of Charitableway.com, the portal for collecting and disseminating payroll donations mainly in the US.
This is how Charitableway announced its closure on its web site:
“We regret to announce that Charitableway is ceasing operations and will no longer be creating or maintaining customised online solutions for workplace giving campaigns, non-profit federations, and financial institutions.
We are committed to an orderly transition to other suitable providers so that we may honour our existing fund disbursement and pledge processing obligations. We will no longer be disbursing pledges/contributions after the end of March”.
The dot com company was started with an enormous injection of venture capital. Its founder Peter Montanos has been reported as saying that the slow adoption of Internet technologies by Not for Profit organisations is one of the reasons for its lack of success.
In the US the e-Philanthropy Foundation says the lessons we should learn from the closure are significant.
Foundation President Ted Hart is reported as saying he is sorry to see anyone dedicated to the use of the Internet for philanthropic purposes fail to succeed, but believes the event is more to do with the future of Charitableway, than it does with the future of e-philanthropy.
He says emphatically that the Internet for philanthropic purposes is here to stay and for those who emphasise relationship building, it will continue to grow quickly.
Charitableway says on its own web site that the market has proven to be smaller than it expected and doesn’t offer the potential that it or its investors anticipated.
All Internet discussions have also been quick to point out that no money raised from online donating has been misappropriated because of the site closure.
And Charitableway says March 30 end-date would allow all pledges to be processed and all funds distributed.
It appears that Charitableway’s demise has not affected any Australian online giving campaigns or work place giving schemes.
Chris Harris from Earth Share has set up pilot programs in NSW and Queensland encouraging work place donations in Government Departments and says the lesson is that if you want people to donate you still have to have a personal relationship with them.
Is online donating and the speed of Internet technologies still a cause of concern by your organisation or do you have a success story to share with others? Post your comments on our Forum.