Facebook makes giving to charity easier with an integrated ‘Donate’ button

Facebook isn’t exactly known as a bastion of altruism, but after rolling out its Safety Check system following both the Paris attacks on Friday and a suicide bombing in Nigeria on Tuesday, the social network is again bolstering its humanitarian outreach efforts with new tools for philanthropic organizations. On Wednesday, it beefed up offerings for nonprofits with the debut of two new features, a fundraising campaign tracker and a simplified Donate button.

The new fundraising campaign tool essentially builds analytics into the Facebook Page settings of eligible organizations. Nonprofits can launch long-term, themed, and specialized fundraising campaigns, set specific milestones for those campaigns, and visually track how much money’s been put towards those milestones and the total goal. The improved Donate button is more singular in its purpose: it lets users contribute to causes directly from their News Feeds via PayPal, a credit card, or debit card.

Facebook’s not rolling out the new fundraising tools broadly yet. To test their efficacy, it’s partnered with Mercy Corps, the National MS Society, the World Wildlife Fund and 37 other organizations for a several-week soft launch period. A Facebook spokesperson said that the tools will expand outside the US sometime next year.

fundraiser-on-mobile-and-shared-with-friends-v4

The impetus for the tools was “improving [the volume of] giving,” said Naomi Gleit, Facebook vice president of product management, in an interview with Mercury News. “What we really think this can improve is retail giving, which is sort of spontaneous giving,” The goal, he said, is to encourage gifting of “smaller amounts” by “people who happened to be inspired by their friends.”

The new donation tools aren’t Facebook’s first attempt at formalizing the sort of philanthropic drives that have taken place on social media over the past several years. It rolled out a Donate button in 2013, and improved the button in August with more flexible options for ad and Pages placement. The newest iteration of the button, the version launching today, integrates on-site payment, allowing users to complete contributions on Facebook. But donating via Facebook requires associating a payment method with your Facebook account, a requirement that some critics argue points to an e-commerce motivation. And while fundraising is free for organizations now, The Verge reports that Facebook will begin charging a small fee in the coming weeks.

Facebook says it’s restricting eligibility for the tools to United States-based 501(c)3 organizations right now, but those applying for consideration in future rounds of testing can sign up at the network’s dedicated donation site.

Social Media

Instagram to make giving easier with a Stories donation sticker for fundraisers

Instagram is preparing to launch a donation feature within Stories that would allow users to raise cash for a range of nonprofit charities. The company confirmed it's aiming to launch the donation sticker later this year.
Computing

Confused about RSS? Don't be. Here's what it is and how to use it

What is an RSS feed, anyway? This traditional method of following online news is still plenty useful. Let's take a look at what RSS means, and what advantages it has in today's busy world.
Gaming

You're never too broke to enjoy the best free-to-play games

Believe it or not, free-to-play games have evolved into engaging, enjoyable experiences. Here are a few of our favorites that you can play right now, including Warframe and the perennially popular League of Legends.
Movies & TV

'Prime'-time TV: Here are the best shows on Amazon Prime right now

There's more to Amazon Prime than free two-day shipping, including access to a number of phenomenal shows at no extra cost. To make the sifting easier, here are our favorite shows currently streaming on Amazon Prime.
Social Media

Periscope tool adds guests to feeds so streamers can become talk show hosts

Periscope users can now invite viewers to chime into the conversation with more than just the comment tool. By enabling the option to add guests, livestreamers can add guests to the conversation, in audio format only.
Photography

Crouching, climbing, and creeping, the perfect Instagram shot knows no bounds

Just how far will you go for the perfect Instagram? A recent survey shows just how willing Instagram users -- and Instagram husbands -- are to climb, lie down, embarrass themselves or let their food go cold for the perfect shot.
Social Media

Facebook’s long-promised ‘unsend’ feature arrives. Here’s how to use it

Send a message to the wrong person? Messenger now gives you 10 minutes to take it back. After an update beginning to roll out today, users can now retract messages if they act within the first 10 minutes after sending the message.
Social Media

YouTube boss admits even her own kids gave the ‘Rewind’ video a thumbs down

YouTube's 2018 Rewind video went down like a lead balloon at the end of last year, becoming the most disliked video in its history. And now YouTube's CEO has admitted that even her own kids thought it was pretty darn awful.
Social Media

Snapchat finally recovers from its redesign — so here comes an Android update

Snapchat's drop in users after launching a controversial redesign has finally stagnated. During the fourth quarter and 2018 earnings report, Snapchat shared that the company is rolling out an Android update designed to increase performance.
Social Media

Skype’s new ‘blur background’ feature could help keep you from blushing

Skype's latest feature for desktop lets you blur your background during video calls. The idea is that it keeps you as the focus instead of distracting others with whatever embarrassing things you might have on show behind you.
Social Media

Twitter users are declining but more people are seeing ads every day

Twitter's end-of-the-year report for 2018 is a mix of good and bad news. The good news is that more users are seeing adds daily, the metric the company will focus on moving forward. But the bad news is that monthly active users are…
Web

Switch up your Reddit routine with these interesting, inspiring, and zany subs

So you've just joined the wonderful world of Reddit and want to explore it. With so many subreddits, however, navigating the "front page of the internet" can be daunting. Here are some of the best subreddits to get you started.
Computing

YouTube beats Apple, Netflix as the most trusted brand by millennials

The popular video sharing website YouTube climbed up in an annual Mblm study, moving up from third place in 2018 and coming ahead of both Apple and Netflix in final 2019 rankings. 
Social Media

LinkedIn finally gets around to launching its own live video tool

Live video is coming to LinkedIn for businesses and individuals on the site. The livestreaming feature is launching in beta in the U.S. before rolling out to the entire community.