Is (RED) doing poorly? The Independent looks at the facts.

Here is a really good article on (RED) in response to the hatchet piece in trade magazine Ad Age depicting it as basically a big scam and saying it wasn't raising any money. As anyone who's followed it knows, (RED) raised more money for Africa in its first 6 months than the entire private sector gave in the previous four years. (There is also a letter up from the head of the Global Fund setting the story about how (RED) benefits the Fund straight.)

The Independent article also does an excellent job of responding to questions like "Shouldn't people just make a charitable donation rather than buying something?" and "Is this essentially a way big companies can look philanthropic while actually giving less?" and "Why do we need (RED) when there are already charities and already a political lobby?"

Interesting comment: "Data collected for RED's chief executive, Bobby Shriver, shows that people who became aware of crises through RED's marketing have increased their charitable giving, rather than thinking they have done enough by buying RED." Not a big surprise, but good news.

I know I have some readers who are highly critical of (RED), and if you're one of them, I hope you'll take a look at this article. I've often said I am not at all the (RED) demographic and am personally fairly unlikely ever to buy a (RED) product, and I don't think anyone who's not part of (RED)'s target audience needs to either - but the article does a good job of summarizing why I completely support this initiative.

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