Google Chrome for a Cause: Boon or bust?

Google's Chrome for a Cause
I just saw a tweet from @legaleagle2010 about the USAToday's story on Google's Chrome for a Cause.

Apparently, installing this extension will let you donate money for every tab you open in a day. You're able to choose to support either: The Nature Conservancy, charity:water, Doctors Without Borders, Un Techo para mi País, or Room to Read.

This is only good between December 15 and 19. And it is unclear what this extension will do, or what information it will collect, after December 19.

While still the undisputed giant in search and the source of many innovations, Google is notable for a bunch of less-than-successful initiatives like Google Wave. As such, Google is a great example of quick proto-typing: trying out an idea and discarding it if it doesn't fly.

So what do you think? Is Chrome for a Cause a boon for nonprofits? Do you think we'll see a tsunami of support for this extension? Or is it merely another ripple like Google Wave?

About Marc A. Pitman

Marc A. Pitman is the CEO of The Concord Leadership Group, the author of Ask Without Fear! and director of The Nonprofit Academy. A coach to leaders around the world, Marc's expertise and enthusiasm engages audiences and has caught the attention of media organizations as diverse as Al Jazeera and Fox News. Marc’s experience also includes pastoring a Vineyard church, managing a gubernatorial campaign, and teaching internet marketing and fundraising at colleges and universities. He is the husband to his best friend and the father of three amazing kids. And if you drive by him on the road, he’ll be singing 80’s tunes loud enough to embarrass his family! You can connect with him on Google+, on Twitter @marcapitman, and like "Ask Without Fear!" on Facebook.
To get his free ebook on 21 ways to get board members engaged with fundraising, go to


  1. Sue Anne Reed says:

    I think the toolbar is a good thing. It allows google to be philanthropic and helps people feel like they're making a difference during the holidays -- without really doing much.

    My only complaint with the program is that I was disappointed that all the donation categories are internationally focused. I wish there had been at least one that was U.S. focused.

    It will be interesting to see what happens after the 19th. My feeling is that they are running this as a test to see what level of donations would actually be triggered.

  2. Great comment!

    I too was wondering if they were testing this to see if it would scale.

What would you add?