The Non-Profit of Charity


I didn’t write a post back when this was first being a thing, but now it’s a thing again, so clearly any time is good to do so. Long story short, “Humble” is dropping all humble pretense some years after getting absorbed into some megacorp and is once again putting a minimum cut on their bundles, which are intended for charity, all because people really wanted to purchase the bundles purely for charity, or at least not let the host in on a cut. I too have done that on bundles prior, and by “prior” I mean I haven’t bought anything from that site in quite some time, especially with regards to bundles. They’ve wanted to move over to a random game selection monthly, one of those loot crate deals that doesn’t get the entirety of Europe on one’s ass, all while messing it up so even the highest tier won’t be able to get all the games on the list. Overall, the selection is lacking and that seems to be a shared sentiment when poking around online. A lot of people having giant Steam libraries of random games that it’s hard to know where they even came from wouldn’t help that either. Of course there is a Steam sale going on right now as well.

And then you have, the site which hosts occasional bundles which are actually slated to send all the money raised to a specific cause, a charity or maybe just trying to get more income sent toward a group of indies. Even if the default cut for was applied (default 10 percent, and the cut per account is actually a user-set slider from 0 to 100), it would still be a higher percentage toward the cause. Contrast to the supposed range of 15 to 30 percent for the minimum that Humble wants to impose this round, and I get the feeling Humble will try to edge that back up to the higher end. I’m pretty sure the attempt prior with removing the sliders entirely was to make this one seem better in a typical business versus consumer tactic.

It really goes about the usual way, where if you want to donate to charity, then just donate directly, and if you want the games, buy the games, maybe in a method that gives some to charity. And of course the idea of having to “give” to a megacorp in some capacity is a turn-off to people like me at least, which is why I don’t follow in Twitch subscriptions or even buying their “bits”, especially since they started bypassing adblock. If I want to give some random gamer money, it’s either residual survey bits (which streamers get the full “bit value” supposedly because the cut for the packs is an additional fee up front) because I don’t know why I still do surveys for currency I don’t even really use (that Google thing included since they axed the music store), or I’d use a more direct path. Especially considering Twitch’s subscription cut is apparently half as far as I hear. Of course without following the monetization plans they offer it excludes a stream from transcoding for more viewers to be able to watch, particularly those with limited bandwidth, which is a lot of people due to telecoms being assholes. And transcoding support is spotty for affiliates because partners get preferred treatment across the board. Generally, if/when I stream, I run at 480p and have no plans to monetize, and not even through a third party option unless I really needed the income to survive in this capitalist society.

Really, if something seems too good to be true in the general case, it often either is or soon will be thanks to market forces and having to appease the almighty shareholders. If luck’s on our side, it won’t go sliding down that path at all. I’m wary of anything free and just live with a sense of weathered paranoia about if/when they’re going to do the thing that shows that it’s starting to slip, even if it’s just a way to try to mitigate hosting costs. Even with good intentions and not locking off existing things with new monetization options, I make note of it. But while it’s a useful free thing, I may as well enjoy the ride while keeping the alternatives in the back of my mind, just in case. I am a bit of a freeloader when it comes to these things, but I try to not wreck the place either by uploading multiple gigabytes of things at once or whatever. If I feel like I’ve gotten a lot of fun from something I might actually pay them back sometimes. I’m just a bit hard to convince from all the times something went wrong, whether or not I was involved with the thing. I’m also more one to give an amount all at once than put in a recurring subscription and having to remember if I end up needing to cut that off if things get tight or if it reaches the amount I was intending to give in the first place, as well as timing for whatever benefits are on offer if I intend to use those. That means more things should really have one-time options. I’m much more likely to use those. In some cases I’ve been waiting for them to be available, or they’re just maybe hidden behind the bigger subscription button on some platforms. I may also have commitment issues.