How the Blockchain Adds Transparency, Eliminates Fraud in Cause-Based Content
Cause-based content is a win-win situation for content creators, audiences, and nonprofits. Artists get to do what they love while doing something good for the world. Viewers give back while engaging with their favorite creators. Nonprofits get more cash to do good work.
Performance-based fundraising is uniquely powerful because music and art by their very nature create emotional engagement in audiences. Nonprofits strive to create that same sense of engagement with donors to draw in funds. A charity concert or performance thus creates natural synergy between philanthropy and art.
Most people know about famous charity mega-concerts such as Live Aid, a 1985 concert that raised $38 million for anti-hunger initiatives in Africa.
Performers now share much of their charity content online. Users of Twitch, a live streaming service especially popular among gamers, have raised over $75 million for 100+ nonprofits.
Now a new charity streaming service, Utopi, plans on bringing cause-based content into the blockchain era.
#utopi is about building a community and empowering people to make a #socialimpact using the power of #blockchaintechnology #blockchain #fintech #bitcoin #crypto #btc #ethereum #cryptocurrency #cryptonews #cryptotrading #coins #tokens #altcoins #charity #livestream #charity
— Utopi (@utopi_io) April 11, 2018
The Challenge of Fraud
Charities exemplify some of humanity’s best characteristics, but the nonprofit world also suffers from fraud.
Bad actors may claim to be collecting money for good works, but in fact, spend most of their budgets on luxurious perks and administrative costs.
Such misspending is at best terrible management and at worst outright theft.
Charity performances tend to be expensive and complicated, and thus especially prone to misappropriation.
Musician Wyclef Jean’s charity Yéle Haiti eventually collapsed after allegedly misspending funds, including Jean paying himself $100,000 to perform at a charity concert.
Sean Hannity’s Freedom Concerts, a series of musical performances raising scholarship money for the children of soldiers killed in combat, allegedly spent only a small portion of their revenue on soldiers’ families.
Charity fraud damages the entire public’s trust in philanthropy, which in turn drives down donations even for highly efficient and effective nonprofits.
Many charities in turn now recognize that transparency and impeccable self-governance are essential. Sam Younger, former chief executive of the Charity Commission for England and Wales, succinctly summed up the nature of the donor/nonprofit relationship in a 2011 speech:
“Our consultation revealed that, while people have great trust in charities, they demand a lot in return: good governance, sound management and absolute probity. The Commission has taken that message on board, and my advice to charities would be: do the same. Think of your relationship with the public as a contract in good faith, not as a relationship of unconditional love”.
Many companies already use blockchain to track product supply chains.
Blockchain’s immutable transaction ledger is an ideal tool for recording and tracing where physical objects have come from. Utopi’s blockchain tokens operate on the same principle, but for charity donations.
Performers can partner with Utopi to create live streams of music, dance, classes, or anything else they excel at. Utopi users pay to access those live streams with Utopi token donations.
Those donations automatically register on the token’s ledger, where the entry serves as a “ticket” to a digital “seat” for the performance. After the show is over, smart contracts built into the token automatically transfer it into the national currency of the target charity and process the donation.
Giving to a charity concert can sometimes feel like giving to a mysterious black box; money goes in, and some amount of actual charity work comes out the other side, but the process in the middle is obscure.
Utopi’s model uses blockchain to create a clear path from a donation on one end, to support a charity on the other, while providing fans with exclusive high-quality content.
The popularity of charity “Let’s Play” videos on Twitch shows that performers don’t have to be as big as Beyonce to make a difference.
Utopi is using blockchain to create a digital platform where anyone can create low-cost, cause-based content, whether they’re a small indie band or a megastar performing an impromptu acoustic set in their living room.
With fraud-fighting blockchain, performers of any stripe will have a tool for a charity performance, and donors can be assured their funds won’t be wasted.
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