Monday, December 1, 2014


We’ve been through Thanksgiving Thursday, Cyber Friday (which started weeks ago), Cyber Monday (today) and now …

Tomorrow, December 2, is Giving Tuesday, a virtual program in which anyone and everyone is encouraged to support whichever charities they choose; and the charities are free to promote themselves as they will. The best evidence is that GT creates a giving bump.  For more info visit

Many gifts are new; others may be gifts that would have been made in any case. But the real value of GT is in creating awareness. The “father” of GT is Henry Timms, CEO of the 92nd St. Y in New York. A few years ago he pulled together about a dozen people, of whom I was one, to pop this idea – which of course we all liked. The GT web site was created; we worked our nets; the group enlarged – and from then on has grown virally as was the intent. GT is not owned by anyone; there is no central organization; there is no board of directors.  Every charity is free to adapt GT to its own use as it sees fit. There are no copyrights or service marks. GT very much reflects Henry’s concept of ”the new power,” distributed freely and horizontally, rather than top-down – the traditional way.

Between now and year-end, the holiday shopping season, an estimated $616 billion will be spent by consumers; in all of 2013 Giving USA reports $335 in charitable gifts.