Dilemma: gambling money vs. good causes?

This week a UK-based link marketing agency emailed me and offered me 170 dollars for posting an ad for a gambling site. I don’t need or want to earn money from this blog, so at first I thought I’d just ignore the email. Then it dawned to me I could use this money for Kiva microloans, or just donate it to charity. But I couldn’t quite make up my mind whether this would be 100% kosher from the ethical point of view as the money is somewhat stained with an addiction that has ruined the lives of many.
So hereby I turn to you, the four or so readers of this blog. Should I take the cambling companies money and use it for a good cause or tell them to take their money and … use it on cunning campaigns elsewhere?

Update March 9th

I’ve gotten some feedback face-to-face, on Facebook and here (cheers, Sepp!). And it seems I may have over-dramatized this offer. There’s little harm in having an online gaming company fund your Kiva account. So, dear /NAME REMOVED March 12th/, consider yourself linked to and thank you for letting me have a nice Kiva budget!

Update March 12th

The agency contacted me again and asked for the reference to the gaming company and agency to be removed as the advert that we asked you to place may come across a little negative to your readers. However, the email also said since this money is going to charity, we will still pay you the $175 as agreed. Though this partially motivated by not wanting any negative coverage by the sometimes-so-unpredictable bloggers , it’s still a somewhat kind thing to do. Kudos to the Gaming Company that wants to fund my Kiva account anonymously!

Update March 21st

I had removed the link and emailed my contact person in the unnamed Marketing Agency, but heard nothing back for almost a week. After my second somewhat sarcastic email last Friday I finally received 175 dollars on my PayPal account two days ago. Apparently the person making payments had been sick, silly me for starting to doubt their word [insert smileyface here]. I’ve now made my first gambling-funded Kiva loans to a micro-preneur in Mongolia and a farmer in Kyrgyzstan. To conclude:

  • I now feel a tiny bit more respect towards a certain gaming company and a certain marketing agency.
  • My blog has been useful in many ways, this was the first time the benefit had been financial. (Despite the money not going to me). If you like to write and don’t yet have a blog, you’re missing a trick.
  • Two people out there are closer to their funding goals. You too can contribute via Kiva, even without shelling out your own money when you use this link.
  • Marketing is not all bad, it seems.

I guess all is well that ends well, especially when the events unfold in such interesting manner like they did this time.

3 comments

  1. maloki

    That’s great!

    I haven’t done anything similar yet. But I do love Kiva, I almost (I tried at least) convinced the Flattr office to sign up to it, well individual employees at least.

    And $175 is like 7 loans? That’s great! And when it get’s re-payed you can loan it to someone again. Keep us updated!

  2. Andrus

    I actually gave out two larger loans ($100 and $50, respectively), made a small donation to the Kiva foundation, and there’s still $13 left on my account. Posting some updates here is a good idea, will do!

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