Last week, I broke the news that comedian Drew Carey was going to donate 1 million dollars to Lance Armstrong's Live Strong foundation if he snagged 1 million followers on Twitter. The community responded twofold: Some people loved the idea and are still championing behind him, while others looked at this as another celebrity using charity as a means to simply gain online popularity. Carey follows a long list of celebs, including Ashton Kutcher, Oprah and Hugh Jackman, who have recently used social media for social good. Using is a key word for many.
Here's the video of Drew Carey's big announcement:
While Carey responded to skeptics on his blog, this continues to raise the question- is it really wrong to raise awareness and money for a good cause by making fun and relevant engagement around it? Celebs tend to get a bad rap when their philanthropic gestures make headlines. However, can't using Twitter and online tools for social good be looked at as the modern day marathon?
We sponsor friends, family & colleagues for a run or walk, which goes to charity. Wouldn't it be wrong to say to them or even to ourselves: "Hey, why don't we just donate this money anyway?" So why do we feel the need to constantly question the integrity of respected and consistent high profile personalities doing the same?
In the end, if charity and giving back is pegged as a trend spearheaded by a couple of big names, so be it. It's the one trend I hope that's here to stay.
Take action and help Drew Carey get 1 million followers and in theory you are part of a 1 million dollar donation to Live Strong too! Follow him @drewfromtv.