You know, I’ve been writing about GoFundMe fraud for quite some time, despite the fact that I only got around to starting this site a few months ago. And one thing that never ceases to amaze me — despite my own experience with GoFundMe laughing in my face nearly two years ago when I tried to get a fraudulent fundraiser shut down — is how GoFundMe’s revolving door of spokespeople simply don’t acknowledge the risks. Bruh. We aren’t stupid. We know fraud happens. And that’s OK, no platform is 100% safe — I wrote about the financial crisis as it was happening back in 2008, and have written about accounting for years, so if Enrons and LandAmericas and Satyams can happen, why not personal crowdfunding fraud?
Admitting that fraud does happen doesn’t change the good work GoFundMe has done over the years. But failing to acknowledge it at all DOES, at it makes GoFundMe appear as though they are so paranoid about it, they want the rest of us to actually believe it’s virtually impossible on their platform. Again: bruh. Y’all trippin.
As you know, we covered the Philando Castile GoFundMe campaigns that popped up shortly after he was killed and knew the whole situation was ripe for fuckery. Now, here we have the major paper in Minneapolis doing the same.
At least four online fundraising campaigns on a popular website have raised more than $310,000 in less than a week on behalf of the loved ones of Philando Castile, who was fatally shot by a police officer in Falcon Heights.
Representatives of the family, however, advised in an e-mail on Tuesday that all donations be sent to Shiloh Missionary Baptist Church at 501 W. Lawson Av. in St. Paul and not to the GoFundMe efforts.
In their few days of existence, each GoFundMe page has been peppered with questions about their legitimacy and whether the money will actually go to the stated recipients.
While GoFundMe officials say online that it’s up to potential donors to size up what’s legitimate, a spokesman for the crowdfunding site said Tuesday that the company seeks to weed out fraud.
“It’s important to understand,” GoFundMe spokesman Bobby Whithorne told the Star Tribune, “that fraudulent campaigns make up less than one-tenth of 1 percent of all GoFundMe campaigns. We have a thorough verification process, deploy proprietary technical tools, and a dedicated team … works around the clock to monitor fraudulent behavior.”
Yo, Bobby, knock it off. We’re onto you. The family of this man literally just said they don’t have any GoFundMe campaigns up and you’re seriously telling the Star-Tribune that fraud is a rare occurrence your platform? How dumb do you think we are? I’ve only been publishing here since April and I can send you a few hundred bullshit campaigns, most of which GoFundMe just removes as if they never existed and goes back to bragging about how much good they do.
We’re watching, GoFundMe. Get your shit together.