On Thursday, petition website Change.org announced the launch of its new crowdfunding features. This news comes just after the website confirmed it has surpassed 150 million users worldwide. Ben Rattray, CEO and founder of Change.org, stated it will now allow users to raise funds for topics they are passionate about:
“Over the past few months we have been beta testing one of these fundraising tools in the U.S. — crowdfunding — and it’s clear there is immense potential power in combining citizen-driven crowdfunding efforts with citizen-driven advocacy campaigns.”
Rattray also explained how crowdfunding can help its users:
“Crowdfunding can be used in wide-ranging ways to fuel campaigns, and we’re already starting to see many possibilities emerge — from raising money to fund a billboard making a campaign impossible to ignore, to screen a documentary on child marriage in rural communities in Ethiopia, to fly to deliver petition signatures to ask major grocery retailers to end food waste, and to rebuild the life of a woman whose daughter’s petition on Change.org helped get her clemency after being jailed for a first-time non-violent drug offense for 17 years.”
Ben then added:
“We believe there is huge potential in enabling people to pool money to create change, and crowdfunding for campaigns is just one way we can unlock it. A few years ago we launched Promoted Petitions, a tool that enables anyone to contribute money to promote the campaigns they care about to other Change.org users. Nearly 500,000 people have used this product even though it’s only been available to a small segment of our users. Alongside the expansion of our crowdfunding tool we will be enhancing the power of our Promoted Petitions product and extending it globally. We are also developing a monthly subscription product to support movements, and we will continue to add to the depth and flexibility of our fundraising tools in the months and years ahead.”
Rattray went on to reveal that Change.org will be phasing out its Sponsored Petition advertising feature over the next six months.