But the ethics of alleged cons and “fakers” become messier when they appear to exploit both potential donors and other disadvantaged communities. Robinson, the aspiring esthetician who curates aid requests on Twitter, said she became demoralized…
This is a serious problem that I’m grappling with right now in two pretty large Facebook LGBTQ communities I help administer. These two private groups have between them a couple of hundred thousand members, with perhaps 10 to 20,000 who check in regularly.
One group is focused on social support while the other group is dedicated more to activism and information sharing.
Both groups have seen an explosion in post requests for Venmo and GoFundMe drives for members in need.
But for years we’ve had a policy of not approving such posts, primarily because of the very real risk of fraud and scams.
But we are also worried about how requests would likely explode if we allowed any. While that might sound cynical, it’s really an acknowledgment that our groups exist for reasons and that we would like to continue to operate for those reasons.
We have not been able to come to any consensus on how we might be able to approve funding requests. It’s a very hard problem, because as great as the need is, the risks and difficulties are as great.
I’d be interested to know how other communities have tackled this problem.