Easy Caring; Easy Giving

Facebook has opened my eyes to something about charity, giving and caring. It seems obvious now but many things do…. in retrospect. ┬áThere’s a new model in place for these things, and it’s easy as can be – just a mouse-click away, in fact.
A bit of background: I’d been working with a number of musicians on the production of a music CD, proceeds from the sale of which would be donated to the local food bank. The Facebook buzz for the project was significant, registering a pile of “likes”, “can’t wait” responses and plenty of encouragement for the charitable purpose itself.
Once the CD was produced, I began to assist with the sale of it. For one event, where a number of Facebook people in my circle were confirmed attendees, I asked if they’d spend a bit of time at the event manning a sales table. Since I’d contacted the ones who seemed the most enthusiastic about the project, I thought it’d be a breeze to get their help.
I was wrong.
Despite all the hoopla about helping on Facebook , none of them could spare the time to do any such thing, including the daughter of the individual which the recording was a tribute to. Excuses ranged from the ridiculous (“It’s the day before my 30th birthday”) to the sublimely ridiculous (“I’m going there to support someone”).
Facebook is a place where you can join (or create) an endless variety of groups concerned with social causes. But, apart from existing, these groups do absolutely nothing to further the causes. They’re the proverbial “honk if you care” gesture. I guess for some that’s enough.
So, join a couple of Facebook groups, fire up YouTube and relax. You can take comfort in the knowledge you’re “doing your bit” for the world around you.
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7 Responses to Easy Caring; Easy Giving

  1. Jim Ansell says:

    Two comments;
    1) As one who declined to “man” a table at an event, I hope my excuse was not taken as a refusal to be helpful, for I AM a helpful person, but sometimes it’s ok to say no, selfishly or not.
    2) I believe in energetic connection to stuff that science cannot prove or disprove. Rational thinking (to the exclusion of the consideration of other possibilities) is a symptom of the arrogance displayed all too often by human beings. We are sensory deficient living things in comparison with most of our non-human bretheren. Just because we can’t “see” or “prove” something doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist. Thoughts are things…choose the good ones.

  2. admin says:

    Regarding #1, I can only say the comment was not “about” you in any specific way. If you are or aren’t a “helpful” person is none of my business or concern really. The point of the blog item was the non-committal way that social media allow people to feel they’re “doing something”. Do you disagree with that premise?

    Regarding #2, I don’t disagree in principle, but just don’t get whether it’s a rebuttal, extension or refinement of the point I was trying to make.

    Thanks for taking the time to comment.

  3. admin says:

    Wait a minute! I just “got it”. Thinking good thoughts actually “does something”. Is that your point?

  4. Jim Ansell says:

    2) Sorry, I might have referred to this bit; “But, apart from existing, these groups do absolutely nothing to further the causes.” Yes, “thinking good thoughts” actually does something (in my opinion)…that was my point. Energy exists in many forms. People declaring their “support” via seemingly trivial Facebook groups etc. send their minute bits of energy and the sum of all those bits??? So yes, it was a rebuttal of sorts to your quoted statement. Perhaps you see my point and possibly agree?

  5. admin says:

    That’s one of those points it would be impossible to disagree with because there’s no rational foundation to test the argument. I guess I’d say sending positive mental energy could have beneficial effects, but unlikely as beneficial as getting out (and using) a checkbook.

    A question for you: You describe Facebook support as “seemingly” trivial. Do you contend it’s something more?

  6. Jim Ansell says:

    Nah…it is “probably” trivial to only declare support via FB, but some who are alerted to the cause in question (through FB) will offer the “chequebook” type of support as well. So, I do contend it can be more than trivial. Awareness is the first step…yadda yadda.

  7. admin says:

    Sounds to me if you needed help, you’d prefer an actual hand up over good wishes. My reservation about FB “causes” is that it creates a situation where a few mouse clicks can leave one with a rationalization that they’ve actually “done” something about an important problem. Kind of “do good” escapism, if you will. Click and forget.