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I have put quite a lot of thought over the last few years to the impact of blockchain technology on charities and philanthropy. I even went into a fair amount of detail on Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) in a recent post. So I was pretty surprised in recent weeks to see a big philanthropy-related issue arise in the blockchain world that took me totally by surprise: namely the fact that many ICOs are using seemingly charitable structures and hence when people purchase crypto tokens this is often better understood as a ‘donation’ rather than an ‘investment’.
For me, given how much time I have spent thinking about how philanthropy could take advantage of disruptive technologies, it is also a salutary reminder that we should also keep a close watch on how those same disruptive technologies might in the future take advantage of philanthropy.
This came to light (for me at least) as a result of the news that a fight had broken out between the founders of Tezos - the start-up at the centre of one of the biggest ICOs to date (which raised $232 million) – and the man tasked with overseeing the Swiss foundation that is the actual beneficiary of money raised through the token sale.
Read the full article on cryptocurrency and philanthropy by Rhodri Davies at Charities Aid Foundation