Face­book pledges $50M a year to match

The Columbus Dispatch - - Market Summary - By Bar­bara Or­tu­tay

NEW YORK — Face­book is pledg­ing $50 mil­lion a year to match disas­ter-re­lief dona­tions, part of a bevy of tools and ef­forts around char­i­ta­ble causes the so­cial me­dia gi­ant an­nounced on Wed­nes­day.

The pledge isn’t all new money, but rep­re­sents an ef­fort to for­mal­ize matches Face­book has al­ready been mak­ing on an ad-hoc ba­sis. For ex­am­ple, it matched user dona­tions up to $1 mil­lion for Hur­ri­cane Har­vey re­lief ear­lier this year. The com­pany says it has not yet de­ter­mined how it will dis­trib­ute the money.

Face­book also said it will give re­lief or­ga­ni­za­tions such as the Red Cross ac­cess to data on what users need and where they are dur­ing a disas­ter.

While Face­book users can al­ready see in­di­vid­ual pleas and of­fers for help, re­lief groups will get a broader set of ag­gre­gated, or­ga­nized data sim­i­lar to what Face­book sees. That in­cludes re­al­time maps show­ing where peo­ple need help, whether that’s wa­ter, shel­ter or baby sup­plies.

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