Charlottesville-area Libertarian activist Arin Sime has developed a new web-based tool for non-profit or political fundraising.
According to the July 6 Augusta Free Press, when Sime encountered problems using PayPal (the industry standard) for accepting donations to a small local political organization, he decided to develop software that acknowledges and meets the sometimes idiosyncratic needs of groups like that.
Small, localized non-profits, Sime noted, often do not have the same kind of organizational structure that a standard business or national group has, the kind of structure that PayPal (and, for that matter, banks) will take for granted.
AFP's Chris Graham reports on Sime's new project, called Donor Town Square:
PayPal, Sime said, was designed for eBay and auctions, "and it really works great for that purpose."It's nice to see an example of the entrepreneurial spirit aimed at helping charitable, educational, and political groups.
"I use it," Sime said. "But for somebody who wants a simple donation, it doesn't need to be as complex as they make it out to be.
"My process is you go to the Donor Town Square Web site, and in just a couple of minutes, you can set up a donation page, and then within 24 to 48 hours, we take a look at the account, and mark it for approval or not, and then you're ready to take donations," Sime said.
Sime has set up donation pages for campaigns from all sides of the political spectrum in addition to groups including Virginians Over-Taxed On Residences and Nation's Missing Children Organization.
Donor Town Square uses a number of security precautions in setting up its donation pages - including SSL encryption, the standard for use on the 'Net, which makes it so that nobody can read the credit-card numbers that are typed in.