Facebook launches Personal Fundraiser

The feature will compete with the likes of GoFundMe

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Facebook has launched a new feature that allows Facebook users to raise funds for personal causes, either for themselves, for friends or family members.

Just like other social crowdfunding platforms such as GoFundMe, Personal Fundraiser, as it has been called, allows people to launch their own campaigns to help raise money for a number of different causes, including to pay for education, medical bills, crisis relief, personal emergencies such as house fires, theft or accidents, and funeral costs.

Facebook said the feature will help raise awareness quickly, encouraging the community to share information about the campaigns directly from Facebook. Anyone contributing money towards the fundraising effort will be able to see how they're linked to the person launching the campaign, who will benefit from the funds and who else has donated, with profiles displayed alongside the information about the cause.

"Personal fundraisers will launch in the US for people aged 18 years or older, and in beta over the next few weeks, as we hope to continue to learn and improve the product to make it even more useful," Naomi Gleit, VP for social good, explained.

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"For example, we will begin with six specific categories for critical financial needs and include a 24-hour fundraiser review process. As we learn more, we hope to expand our categories and automate more of the review process."

Personal Fundraiser will complement Facebook's other charitable features, including the ability to donate money to charities and non-profits directly from the social network.

"We're constantly inspired by all the good done by people on Facebook and are committed to building tools that help build a supportive and safe global community," Gleit added.

All campaigns will lose 6.9% of the money raised, plus $0.30 per donation, which will cover Facebook's payment processing fees, fundraiser vetting, and security and fraud protection.

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