An article on PaymentsSource suggests that the electronic currency bitcoin is being used by “charities”, though the organizations profiled seem to be more about opposing the government than providing food to the hungry or helping orphans.
From the article:
Because Bitcoin transactions are virtually instant, free and near-anonymous, charitable organizations are collecting and distributing donations in bitcoin.
“Bitcoin is great for non-profit organizations and non-profit organizations are great for Bitcoin,” said Stephanie Murphy, who works with Fr33 Aid, during a panel discussion at the Bitcoin 2013 conference in San Jose, Calif. Fr33 Aid provides support to volunteers who offer medical and educational services at events promoting liberty.
“Charitable organizations” seems to have a rather expansive definition in this piece. For example, Fr33 Aid recently dropped its bid to win nonprofit status from the Internal Revenue Service and announced that it would conduct its business in bitcoin.
“When we founded Fr33 Aid in early 2011, the banks all required a taxpayer ID number and government paperwork,” said Teresa Warmke, Fr33 Aid’s co-founder and treasurer. “Bitcoin changed everything. We can focus on our mission now that Fr33 Aid’s assets are safe in our Bitcoin wallet.”
It seems from the press release that Fr33 Aid’s goal is to evade the U.S. government by operating in Bitcoin. Read the press release here.
Another organization mentioned was the Free State Project, which aims to get people to move to New Hampshire in sufficient numbers to displace the current residents’ voting power and vote for laws that reflect its goal that “government’s maximum role should be to help individuals defend themselves from force and fraud. We welcome you and support your desire to live according to your values. We ask only that you support others in their right to do the same.”
Read more here.
The third example of a ‘charitiy’ is not quite the textbook example.
From the article:
Antiwar.com, an educational outlet for “news and views against the empire,” also accepts bitcoins. The non-profit sometimes converts its bitcoins into FRNs, but other times it pays for services in the digital currency, said Angela Keaton, director of operations at antiwar.com.It is not clear who “the empire” is, but it seems hard to include Antiwar.com in the same class as other charities such as St. Jude’s hospital for children.
While Bitcoin is an interesting payments exercise, the “charities” listed in the article seem to indicate that its appeal is still primarily among fringe groups that would rather avoid the mainstream than become part of it.
Click here to read more from PaymentsSource.