One of the first ice-bucket-belittlers was Will Oremus at Slate. Oremus argues, fairly convincingly, that the ice bucket challenge initially had nothing to do with ALS (fair enough, but so what?) and then goes on to say that it seems unlikely that the campaign is actually increasing the amount of money being given to ALS – people are probably posting videos, but not donating.
Oremus wrote :
Yet it’s hard to shake the feeling that, for most of the people posting ice bucket videos of themselves on Facebook, Vine, and Instagram, the charity part remains a postscript. Remember, the way the challenge is set up, the ice-drenching is the alternative to contributing actual money. Some of the people issuing the challenges have tweaked the rules by asking people to contribute $10 even if they do soak themselves. Even so, a lot of the participants are probably spending more money on bagged ice than on ALS research.
As for “raising awareness,” few of the videos I’ve seen contain any substantive information about the disease, why the money is needed, or how it will be used. More than anything else, the ice bucket videos feel like an exercise in raising awareness of one’s own zaniness, altruism, and/or attractiveness in a wet T-shirt.
Very catchy, very catty, Will. But the has since said that it has raised $15.6 million as a result of the challenge, nine times what it normally raises in the same time frame. Another ALS charity, told the Washington Post that its donations were another ALS charity, says that has raised $580,000 since the beginning of August, 10 times what it normally receives.
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