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[Technology Targets World Problems]

January 23, 2000 By Dave Kristula

"Once on this web full of advertisements it was hard to see any of them doing any good. The times have changed."

It wasn't long ago that I was helping out in my local soup kitchen and writing my 9th grade report on the rainforests. That was back in 1996 - the Internet wasn't a household thing - and for some reason I never connected the power of the two - the future masses of the Internet and the desire to help out the world. Could the Internet really be used for good?

You could always follow the meditations of Cliff Stoll - through his books Silicon Snake Oil and High Tech Heretic - and come upon the assumption that you shouldn't be using a computer every day of your life. Perhaps you could spare us just ten minutes? ;)

Once on this web full of advertisements it was hard to see any of them doing any good. The times have changed. Now, at places like and you can lend your eyes for a few seconds to make a world of difference for someone.

At The Hunger Site, you can click a button to give an average of 2 to 3 cups of food to feed a hungry person.

Starting in mid-January 2000,, which donates advertising proceeds from it's portal and e-mail service, launched the Race for the Rainforest, where you can click a button and up pops a few small ads - which allows a donation to save a portion of the rainforest.

The sweet thing is, you can visit both of these sites up to once a day for a full donation. Imagine, in a year, you could "donate" almost 1,000 cups of food by yourself. If you told A few friends, that number would grow exponentially.

Two other sites that shouldn't go without mention - and

At GreaterGood, you shop through their portal and 5% of the money you spend on purchases is donated to a charity you choose from a lengthy list (ahead of time, of course!)

NetAid, which held a free music concerts online from three major cities on October 9, 1999, is a leading online cause with a variety of goals - mainly, to help out the world's poor through donations and initiatives in an attempt to make poverty a thing of the past.

If you have a chance, check out a few of the sites from this article. It's not like it costs you anything! =)

Dave Kristula is the editor of SLASH Magazine.  He likes to lend a helping
hand while he isn't busy working on his web site.  He can be reached at
If you don't get a response within a month, check out your local Taco Bell.
He may have just been hungry. :)


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