YouTube just made it a lot easier for its users in the U.S. to use their videos to drive donations to nonprofit organizations. With the new donation cards, video creators can now choose any of the over 1.8 million IRS-validated 501(c)3 nonprofit and direct donations to them right from their videos.
Nonprofits could already use these cards on their own videos. Often, though, it’s videos from regular YouTube users that are far more likely to solicit donations than a slickly produced video from a nonprofit. The whole ice bucket challenge meme probably would have generated even more donations to the ALS Association if people had been able to add a donation card to their videos.
YouTube users could, or course, always use annotations in their videos to link to fundraising sites, but those are probably far less likely to result in actual donations than a YouTube card.
Once you decide to make a donation, the nonprofits will receive 100 percent of that money. Google isn’t taking a cut from this and isn’t charging any credit card fees either.
For now, this program is only available to YouTube users in the U.S., but Google says it plans to open this program up to more countries “so creators across the world can power nonprofits they care about.”