Monday, June 13, 2011

Are Blacks More Likely Than Whites to Support Causes Online?

BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) has established a number of online fundraisers via social networks in the past few years. As such we were intrigued by a new survey that claims ethnicity is a factor in how people perceive charitable and political causes they encounter on social networks and whether they go on to get involved with those causes.  [SOURCE]

Out of 2,000 participants in the survey, 30 percent of Black adults and 39 percent of Hispanics said they were more likely to support online causes rather than causes they encountered offline; 24 percent of whites said the same.

The study was released by Georgetown University’s Center for Social Impact Communication and Ogilvy PR, a public-relations company.

While most of the survey participants said they believed they could make a difference by supporting a charitable or political cause, African Americans and Hispanics were more optimistic about the effectiveness of using online networks to do so. When asked if tools like Facebook, Twitter, and blogs could help spread the word about a cause, 58 percent of Blacks and 51 percent of Hispanics agreed, compared with 34 percent of whites.

In addition, more Blacks and Hispanics said Facebook and other social-networking sites made it easier to support a cause: 62 percent and 64 percent, respectively, compared with 54 percent of whites.

Whites are also less likely to use Twitter in general. According to a telephone survey of 2,277 adults conducted by Princeton Survey Research Associates International, 25 percent of black and 19 percent of Hispanic Internet users say they use Twitter, compared with just 9 percent of white Internet users. What’s more, one in ten Black Internet users now visit Twitter on a typical day, compared with 3 percent of whites and 5 percent of Hispanics.

Yet despite the emphasis placed on social media, blogs and social networking sites are still second to more traditional information sources like television, newspapers, and personal relationships. Likewise, people were more likely to donate money or talk about a social issue than post it to a blog or Facebook, the Georgetown study found.

What the study shows us over all is not to put all your eggs into the social-media basket,” says Julie Dixon, deputy director at the Georgetown Center. Instead, organizations should tailor their communications strategy based on the how their audience is likely to engage.

Our hope is that those of you who support the STEM-based programs that BDPA implements on local, regional and national level will find a way to visit and support our online fundraising efforts. Here is where you can find BDPA in various social networks:
  1. Click and Pledge: Donor designates how funds are used
  2. Crowdrise: BDPA IT Corps
  3. Crowdrise: Various local chapter college scholarships
  4. Facebook: BDPA Charlotte HSCC program
  5. Facebook: BDPA IT Corps
  6. Facebook: BDPA Los Angeles HSCC program
  7. Facebook: BETF Endowment Fund
  8. Facebook: Jesse Bemley Scholarship
  9. Donor designates how funds are used
What is your take on the survey findings?

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