Does the economy have you down, depressed, and dejected? Is money tight? Are your credit card bills soaring out of control? Maybe you’ve had some unexpected medical bills, or an accident, fire, or other catastrophe that is costing you far more money than you can get your hands on.
Or maybe you want something a bit more frivolous, such as that dream Caribbean vacation, breast implants, a nose job, or that Hummer you’ve had your eye on (and of course, then you will need extra finances to cover the gas!). No worries… just go online and ask for the money!
Otherwise known as “cyber-begging,” asking for money online is the modern version of traditional panhandling. It involves asking strangers for money to meet a perceived or stated need. In a quote from Wikipedia, the online encyclopedia, “Internet begging has the clear advantage to street panhandling in that it can be practiced with relative anonymity, thereby eliminating or reducing the shame and disgrace apparent of begging in public.”
Surrounded as we are by job loss, home foreclosures, and bank failures, it’s no wonder that cyber-begging has become popular. All over the Internet, sites are popping up to allow people to receive money online. So if you are interested in hopping on the Internet begging bandwagon, how do you get started?
There are several ways you can set up your own website to encourage people to contribute to your cause. Probably the easiest is to simply sign on with one of the cyber-begging sites that, for a small monthly fee, allow you to create your own page detailing your request. This page will include a button for donors to click if they wish to make a contribution, usually through PayPal, a secure online site that facilitates money transfers between people or organizations. This is likely the safest and most convenient way for you to receive donations, however solicitors have also been known to accept funds through the mail. If you are interested in doing this, it is recommended that you obtain a P.O. box in order to safeguard your home mailing address.
Your donation site will allow the donor to contribute any amount, from one cent to thousands of dollars. You may sacrifice a bit of dignity by cyber-begging, but if history is to be trusted, you will be collecting too much cash to have time to give it a lot of thought. A quick review of search engine results will turn up dozens of successful cyber-beggars, and that doesn’t include all those who have achieved their goals and discontinued their web sites!
So, do you have a heart-wrenching tale of job loss, home foreclosure, medical expenses, or business failure? Perhaps you simply want a vacation or liposuction. It really doesn’t matter… as long as your story strikes a chord with your Internet audience, you will assuredly start raking in the dough.