The One-Click Charity Check portion of kimberlychapman.com is on hiatus. This page exists for archival purposes only. All information on this page should be considered out of date as of April 14, 2004.
Press information can be found on the Press Page.
This is the anticipated list of frequently asked questions and their answers. If you email me to ask a question that is answered here, your email will be ignored.
The idea had been floating in my brain around for awhile and was discussed with some others online, but work actually began in mid-March, 2001. The first pages were put up in late March, 2001.
This site is owned and operated entirely by Kimberly Chapman. For more details, see the About page.
I only review one-click charity sites that are free to the user. This does not include e-cards or email for charity, paid donation sites, sites that require users visit sponsor pages, etc. I also do not review sites that require registration for donations to count.
Please note: the purpose of this site is NOT to validate the beneficiaries of the one-click sites, nor other charities. I urge concerned individuals to carefully examine the information available from each beneficiary to determine whether or not it is a cause you wish to support. You may wish to check out some of the links I have for organizations that rate charities.
By one-click, I mean the site in question allows a free donation whereby all the user has to do is click a single button, graphic, or equivalent link. A page is then loaded that contains banner or equivalent style advertising. The advertisers pay either the site or the beneficiary charity directly as a result of the number of times the banner is downloaded. In most cases, only one download per IP is recorded.
The site may be maintained by the beneficiary itself, or by a generous third party (as is usually the case). Either way, all that is required of the user is a single click. One-Click Charity Check does not review sites that require users to visit sponsor pages, to send email or e-cards, or to perform any other activity besides clicking on a free-donation button. Sites that have additional features such as these may be reviewed, but I will only be reviewing the one-click portion of the site.
Because I felt there was the need for someone to examine one-click charities and help people pick the legitimate ones from the scams, and to help sites that are legitimate but appear questionable to improve in such a way to encourage people to trust them. I also hope to encourage excellence by rewarding well-done sites with high marks.
None. It is a volunteer effort.
At this time, nothing on my website as a whole makes money for me either other than some Amazon links, which provide meager amounts of gift certificate money for books. Details of this are on the About page.
I am not accredited in any way in terms of charity consulting or accounting. I have worked as a tech journalist, so I have experience in research, interviewing, and the Internet. I also once worked for a non-profit consultant, doing research and administrative assistance, which gave me a basic understanding of non-profit organizations, primarily day care in Ontario. From 2002-2004 I was a volunteer/employee of Citizen Alert, a non-profit environmental activist group in Nevada, and I'm part of the general leftish activist scene in my area. Other than that, I'm just a concerned individual making an effort to promote good habits by the one-click charity sites.
This means I've started the review process, but it has not been completed. In most cases, this will mean I have contacted the site administrator and/or the beneficiaries with questions, and they have not yet answered my requests for information. If these requests go unanswered for a long period of time, I will make note of it alongside the Pending status label. If it has been about three months and I haven't been able to get a confirmation, I'll move the site from the main list to the Unconfirmed list, where it will stay until I get some kind of reply or confirmation from the beneficiary. Users should consider this lack of confirmation to mean whatever they want it to mean; I imply nothing other than the failure to obtain confirmation.
The order of the starting list was copied from my personal one-click charity list as it existed on March 26, 2001. Sites will be added to the bottom of the list as I find out about them. Sites moved off the main list, if re-added in the future, will be added at the bottom. Requests for re-reviews generally take precedence over non-reviewed sites.
There is a full alphabetical list, but I haven't ordered the charities that way because it makes my life easier not to. By ordering them as I find them, I can just tack new reviews/pages onto the end of the string of links instead of having to change multiple pages to fit something new in alphabetically. I'm not using scripts to edit these pages; I'm doing it all manually in Notepad, so I need to focus on spending as little time as possible on HTML editing, and more time on actual reviews.
Sites will only be reviewed once until the entire list has been completed, and after that I will cycle through the list. Requests for re-reviews will be honoured as soon as possible after the request, always in order of first-come, first-served. Requests must be made by a representative of the site, not just a "fan." Please see the date at the bottom of each site's review page to determine when it was last updated.
Probably because I haven't got to it yet. Please remember that I'm only one person, and I'm doing this as fast as I can.
First, check the lists of sites to make sure your site isn't already on any of my lists. I will ignore email that suggests a site already on a list. If the site is not there, please go to the contact page to submit it. If the site is there, but the review has not been completed, please be patient. I will be going through that list in the posted order to do reviews. I recommend checking the criteria while you're waiting for me to get around to your site to help you have a site that will earn a good grade.
Please note: I only review sites that have a one-click, free donation component, that don't require visiting sponsor pages, and that don't require registration for donations to count. Do not waste your time and mine by suggesting a site that does not have that kind of format somewhere. If that component is buried within your site, be sure to provide me with a direct URL to the specific page that has that component.
As long as I know about your site (check the list), you will be reviewed. You do not need to sign up, register, or do anything else. If I cannot locate contact information for your beneficiary, or if you are your own beneficiary, I may need to contact you for further information. You will be reviewed whether this information is supplied or not, although do please note that if I can't get the necessary information to satisfy the Critical criteria, your site will get "Not Recommended" status. I recommend checking the criteria while you're waiting for me to get around to your site to help you have a site that will earn a good grade.
The benefit to reviewed sites that pass is that they have been validated on some pretty strict criteria, and can boast about this to potential users. This includes use of the grade graphics, which are restricted to sites that have earned them. The benefit to sites that don't pass the criteria might be harder to see, but it exists: if the site changes to meet the criteria that were missed, a re-review could validate the site. This would allow the site to boast not only their new grade, but that they made a commitment to improvement.
There are no benefits in terms of banner placements, membership, or any other offers. I strongly believe that allowing the reviewed sites to gain rewards other than the grades would be a conflict of interest on my part. I'm doing this first and foremost for the users; I will not indulge in a popularity contest amongst one-click donation sites by giving freebies to the reviewed sites and thus compromise my reviewing integrity.
You can email me (see the contact page) and request that I do another review, but be forewarned that unless the criteria have changed, I will not do a new review unless you've made changes to the site. My time is limited, so I ask that you not request another review unless you have made substantial changes; do not ask me to review the page over and over again as you make one fix at a time.
Requests for second looks will be honoured in order of receipt.
There are many reasons why there is a difference. First, my criteria may be different or more strict than the other ratings site. Secondly, the other site may operate by allowing one-click donation sites to purchase entry, meaning approval may be determined by money paid and not actual review. Thirdly, the other site may have done a more recent review, or I may have, and the reviewed site may have changed between those reviews.
In comparing One-Click Charity Check to other sites, be sure to critically examine differences in criteria, how sites are reviewed/accepted, when reviews were completed, and other differences that could yield conflicting results. You may find another site's criteria to be more tailored to what you're looking for. Check out the list of other review sites on my links page.
If you think the grade is too low: You should consider that these reviews are my sole opinion, and make up your own mind about the site. Nothing I say should preclude you from visiting a site if you wish to continue doing so. Due to the volume of email I receive, I can no longer take time to explain myself to everyone who disagrees with a given review. If you feel you must email me, be sure to be polite or I will ignore your email entirely. You can also voice your opinions in the forum.
If you think the grade is too high: If you have reason to believe that I have missed something in the review that would result in a lower grade for a given site, please contact me to let me know. I may not change the review, but I'm always willing to listen to users who have experienced a problem with a site.
Some sites have multiple charities, and in some cases a parent site manages several one-click sites. I've decided to categorize sites as follows: if a site has the one-click page and all other associated pages (FAQs, Donation Totals, etc.) all contained in one section/domain such that the site could stand alone without users ever visiting the parent site, I consider this a separate site. For example, the GreaterGood.com or Care2.com one-click sites are all self-contained units with separate FAQs, etc., for each one-click charity.
On the other hand, if a site has many charities and many one-click pages, but the supporting pages such as the FAQ and Donation Totals are an aggregate of all of the one-click pages, all of the one-click pages will be reviewed together under the one site. For example, Ecology Fund has many charities, but manages them all on a single site. This distinction allows me to give thorough reviews where items could differ from site to site under a single parent, but spares me from performing duplicate reviews for sites that do not warrant individual treatment.
Please see the criteria page for a full list of how I judge the pages.
You may contact me to let me know why you disagree. Please be aware that I ignore all rude, abusive, and flaming email. If there's something you disagree with, be detailed and specific about what you disagree with and why. Please also be aware that this service is designed to help users above sites, so I will give more consideration to email from people who don't own a one-click site of their own. Due to the volume of email received, I may not be able to respond to your suggestion, but rest assured that if it's polite, I will read it and take it into consideration.
A grade of A+ is an outstanding site that fulfills all criteria, including all "strongly recommended" portions. A grade of A is a good site that fulfills all Critical criteria and Important criteria, but has a failing or two under the Useful criteria. A grade of B is a decent site that fulfills all Critical criteria, but has some failings under Important and/or Useful. A grade of C is an acceptable site that fulfills all Critical criteria, but has many failings under Important and/or Useful.
There are no grades lower than C. Any site that fails to meet all of the Critical criteria automatically gets a "Not Recommended" status.
Use of the grade graphics is restricted to those sites that have earned them. A site may only use the graphic displaying the grade they have received, and it must be linked back to that site's review page. If you see any site that has a grade graphic without that link, or that is using a higher grade than it has earned, or has not been reviewed but is fraudulently claiming to have earned a grade, please report it to me from the contact page.
Any site that abuses the graphics by failing to link them back to the review page or by displaying a false grade will automatically receive a permanent "Not Recommended" status, even if they had previously earned a good grade. Any site that engages in misuse and fraud is clearly being operated by unscrupulous people, and is not one that I would recommend trusting in terms of charitable work. The only exceptions I would make are:
Beyond that, no exceptions will be made. Since use of the graphic is entirely voluntary, I expect only those who are serious about it to use it. If the site is abandoned and not taken down to stop people from continuing to click, that is sufficiently irresponsible behaviour to warrant a "Not Approved" status, as outlined in the criteria.
Sites that deliberately engage in fraud, that is, posting a false grade, will be reported to as many relevant fraud authorities I can find. Furthermore, I will contact the supposed beneficiaries and report the fraud to them as well.
Absolutely! You may do so in text form, or if you wish, you may use one of the graphics below. However, you must put the graphic on your own site; do not pull it from my site, as this will artificially increase my transfer amount and I could end up having to pay more money for that. To save the graphic of your choice, right click (Mac users control click) on it and click on "Save Picture As" or "Save Image As." You may link to any page within the site, although I recommend linking to the home page, which is at http://kimberlychapman.com/charitycheck/charitycheck.html.
You may NOT use the grade graphics, except on a site that has earned that grade. In that case, the link must be to the review page for that specific site. See the question, "What happens to sites that misuse or fraudulently use the grade graphics?" for more details.
If you run a site that lists one-click charities, I have a page about special graphics made just for you!
If you have any further questions, please email me via the contact page. Please be aware that it might take awhile for me to get back to you, and that questions answered in this FAQ will be ignored in email.
This page was last updated on January 6, 2004.
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