Ever hear of “slacktivism”? Snopes.com, by way of Wikipedia, defines it as a kind of “armchair activism” in which the participants “search for the ultimate feel-good that derives from having come to society’s rescue without actually getting one’s hands dirty” or where you get to claim you’re helping a cause when you’re really doing something for yourself.
An example might be Al Gore’s recent defense of his 10-times-national-average home utility bills by claiming that he buys carbon offsets… from his own green investment company which then turns around and makes him a hefty profit.
Or, to note the inspiration for this post, there’s the (Product) RED campaign hyped by celebrities like Bono and Oprah Winfrey, in which they convinced certain companies to offer Red-branded commodity products like cell phones, iPods, and the like, and then designated a portion of the profits to combat AIDS in Africa. Gee, what a deal. I get my expensive tchotchke and do good for the world without any actual cost to me. Or do I?
Spending a dollar to raise a dime
Technorati Tags:AIDS, Bono, Product Red