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Monday, January 18, 2010


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Loquacia Loon

On a smaller scale, designers have got together to sell items for the Red Cross in a skybox at Scribble (http://slurl.com/secondlife/Scribble/135/104/401). I just went back and found the number of items had increased greatly since my previous visit on Friday.

But you are so right about a coordinated effort being needed, and just this morning another designer I spoke to said that she wanted to get something going, confident that she could raise quite a bit from store group members, but was unsure who to approach.

Susan Tenby

I know we are covering this in Friday's Nonprofit Commons meeting, and I think this may be a good project for the NPC community, backed by TechSoup. What would you think would go into producing this? I will be contacting Randall Moss and Keith Morris to attend the Friday morning meeting, at 8:30am SLT, if you want to join us, please do!

Eddi Haskell

I would be glad to promote such an event in my own blog and The Zindra Times, and the other publications that I provide photography to such as Metaverse Messenger, but I prefer that it not be the U.S. Red Cross for one reason- the majority of our readers are not based in the United States. But the American Red Cross is a wonderful organization

I am personally collecting and have kiosks available for http://www.directrelief.org/. a 61 year old organization with a very high effectiveness rating. I think any politically and nationally neutral organization that has been around for many years and has been vetted for effectiveness would be a good choice.

Rhiannon Chatnoir

Saturday afternoon, many of us who had been discussing this very thing on LL's blog, had a meeting on how best to sort a grid-wide Haiti Relief effort (similar to what Relay for Life does for ACS).

The meeting was was made up of numerous residents, some from various social, cultural, nonprofit and other community groups within SL. Collectively we decided on forming a SL group called Virtual Haiti Relief and through this group conduct fundraising and promote events for Haiti relief, along with offering resources and cultural information on Haiti.

To help with sharing information on the many relief events happening throughout SL, we created a Google group that will be basically a collaborative organizer area (http://groups.google.com/group/virtual-haiti-relief) and a shared Google calendar of grid wide events people can add to for Virtual Haiti Relief. (We welcome everyone to post events! & the meeting notes are on the Google group.)

Regarding how to handle establishing a central conduit for donations, we are collaborating with Relay for Life folks and working on getting modded vendor and kiosk systems of what they use for donations. And would publish transaction histories of the donation av so anyone can see totals and to be as transparent as possible.

We are also working on setting up a central out of SL information hub at http://VirtualHaitiRelief.org. It will have a multi author blog and Ham Rambler, who has been flying Search & Rescue teams to Haiti, has already said he will be willing to blog on his sights/reactions and it would be great if any of you would be interested in posting/reposting to it as well.

Dirk Talamasca

Just donate directly to The Red Cross website.

Avoid the lag, distrust, skimming of funds, and counting of the tills to post totals for vanity's sake when people need help more than your ego needs stroking.

Penguin Kuhn

Thanks for the great post. As Susan mentioned, our Fri. Nonprofit Commons meeting will be devoted to Haiti relief efforts and how fellow avatars can help. We'll be updating Nonprofitcommons.org and @npsl on Twitter with further details, so hope to catch folks there.

Mitch Wagner

We looked into asking people for L$ for Haiti for Copper Robot, but rejected the idea for two reasons:

- As I understand it, there's a conversion cost of changing L$ into US$. I've never done it myself so I don't know for sure. Doesn't Linden Lab take a cut?

- There are most definitely legal liability issues in taking donations for a cause, even if you're just passing the virtual hat and immediately passing the money on to a legitimate charity. You could get sued or investigated by the cops.

We concluded the best idea was to just put out a kiosk that, when clicked, took you to the Doctors Without Borders Web site.

Mitch Wagner


Raising funds inside Second Life® is a great idea. I too managed to fund donations to Oxfam Novib by collecting L$. And even though it's great SL™ residents can donate inworld, let's not forget ... If people are able to buy L$, they can also just close the SL™ viewer and donate money to the RL good causes who are offering help to Haiti.

In The Netherlands we have official help organisations which have joined forces and people can donate money to Giro555. Not only the media supports this, but also the national government.

Instead of raising funds inside SL™ residents could show other residents where they could donate money outside of SL™. To be honest I don't think it's truly interesting for a help organisation to build a whole 'pixel presence' inside SL™ to raise funds. I'm sure Second Life® residents are not THAT obvlious to what happens in the real world that they need a help organisation to reach out to them in Second Life® *grumbles*

Ann Otoole

What are the implications of the new Haiti relief tax deduction in respect to SL donations?

If you want the tax break then you need to donate yourself in real life.

But what is the implication for people that aggregate donations in SL, cash out, send the money, then claim the tax deduction for money they did not donate themselves?

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