January 17, 2008 5:45 PM PST

Doing philanthropy the Google way

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As far as Google.org working to improve the flow of information for governments' public service efforts and lobbying public officials for changes, "You won't see many companies stepping up and dealing with governments like that," Moore added.

Google.org carefully chose the initiatives it is funding based on the types of information and engineers it could offer, as well as global reach, Brilliant said. "We took a look at the biggest problems in the world and...then looked at Google and said what do we have to offer?" he said. Those "fit who we are at this moment in time."

A survey of leading Silicon Valley companies found varying focuses when it comes to philanthropy.

Through its corporate responsibility and citizenship initiatives, Microsoft donated nearly $70 million in cash and more than $330 million in software to nonprofits globally in 2007. Many of the projects involve digital literacy, youth programs, and community technology centers in developing countries.

Cisco Systems contributed nearly $117 million in cash and in-kind contributions during 2007. The company plans to spend $15 million over five years on mitigating global warming by integrating network technologies into city infrastructures.

Intel spends more than $100 million a year, mostly supporting education projects, including efforts like teacher training and building computer clubhouses around the world, said Brenda Musilli, president of the Intel Foundation.

Hewlett-Packard also focuses on education, with some funding targeted at economic development and the environment. In 2006, HP spent $45.6 million in cash and equipment toward community investment and has donated more than $1 billion in 20 years.

Salesforce.com has given more than $10 million in grants, mostly focusing on youth and tech programs, since 2000, including $3.5 million globally in 2006.

Online auction company eBay has given more than $8 million to nonprofit organizations through the eBay Foundation since it was created in 1998, including microenterprise development grants aimed at providing access to credit and markets, technical training, economic literacy, and asset development.

But what about Bill Gates and his renowned largesse?

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation tops the list of U.S. foundations in terms of total giving (more than $2.8 billion in 2007 alone), according to The Foundation Center. But it's not really fair to compare the Microsoft founders' private philanthropy with that of a corporate foundation whose activities are linked with the corporation, experts say.

"I think the comparison of Google with the Gates Foundation is not particularly useful," especially since charitable giving by corporations is limited by law to 10 percent of their taxable income, said Moore of CECP.

Under the social entrepreneur framework, one could argue that there is a greater incentive to generate results and provide a rate of return than with traditional charities.

"We're not trying to accomplish the giving away of money, but find a solution to a problem, and if that takes a buck it takes a buck," said Raymond of OnPhilanthropy. "It's not ungenerous because it only took a buck to solve the problem."

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6 comments

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Ah Google
I'm just waiting for Google to fund a colony on mars. Seriously, they have a point, the only way we are going to reach into future initiative is from within the private sector.
Posted by Archus (108 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Good one archus
Last month Magellan released the highly anticipated Maestro 4040 to mixed reviews. <a class="jive-link-external" href="http://www.highspeedsat.com/maestro3100.htm" target="_newWindow">http://www.highspeedsat.com/maestro3100.htm</a> This month, Magellan has released the smaller, less expensive Maestro 3100. This 3.5" display, no-frills unit is aimed squarely at the budget-conscious consumer, and is hitting the street with pricing as low as $250.
Posted by uk-forum (9 comments )
Link Flag
This is nothing: Anoox is giving 100% of its profits away
This is nothing but PR by Google to cover over these facts:
1- Google way over charges for the cost of Advertising
2- Google Advertisers are regularly being fraudulently charged for clicks on their Ads by Google Ad sense web sites, estimates put this as high as $2Bill per month and counting
3- Google executives are paid outrageous compensations, resulting in one Google exec having bought a $20Mill mansion in South France, another having bought his 5th $10Mill home in as little as 2 years, and lets not even talk about the nth Google luxury private Jet purchased to ferry Google exec from one exotic destination to another under disguise of working, etc. etc.

Now you want a search engine that is actually working for the People, check out anoox. It is giving 100% of its Profits away, 50% for Universal Health care &#38; other 50% to what we suggest. You can check it out here:
<a class="jive-link-external" href="http://www.anoox.com/profit-sharing-overview.jsp" target="_newWindow">http://www.anoox.com/profit-sharing-overview.jsp</a>

So rather than PR charity for health care by Google, such as:
"predicting and preventing infectious disease outbreaks like SARS" lets see if Google like Anoox will give all its Profits away for support of Universal Health care. Something, that is Universal Health care, that every civilized Western country offers its people, such as they do in every country in Europe, which BTW is the reason why European economies are doing so much better than US economy as clearly evident by the amazing 50% gain in value of Euro vs Dollar.
Posted by Sea of Cortez (67 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Anoox is spam
The Annooox search engine is the slowest in existence, the search results are not relevant, and the promoters resort to spam and Google hate. I have had spam in my inbox from these guys.

They are obviously jealous of Google.

They say that they give all the profits away, that is after they pay costs and as much salary as possible.
Posted by t8 (3716 comments )
Link Flag
DIY
DIY or you get ****
Posted by wildchild_plasma_gyro (296 comments )
Reply Link Flag
I am the Head of the Department of Cardiovascular and Thoracic Surgery, K J Hospital Research and Postgraduate Centre, Chennai, India. We are performing free cardiac surgery for less affluent children, follow up and research for prevention of heart diseases in children. We require $400/- per surgery We do 20 surgeries a month. Can Google philanthropy help these 'Needy Little Children' for the project is known as 'Needy Little Hearts'.
Posted by sreemlak (1 comment )
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