Thursday, February 2, 2023
Documentary on Nonprofit Organizations and a TED Talk, both Provocative
A story in the Nonprofit Times highlights a book I had not previously heard about entitled "Uncharitable: How Restraints on Nonprofits Undermine Their Potential." Has anybody read this book? So the book has now turned into a documentary, the slick trailer for which is below. The author, Dan Pallotta, apparently believes (I don't want to speak for him, especially since I have neither read the book nor seen the upcoming documentary) nonprofits should be allowed to harness the profit-seeking motivations and practices prevalent in the capitalist market, presumably without fear of losing tax exempt status. Here is a portion of the Nonprofit Times summary.
Uncharitable, a documentary that argues nonprofits operate under excessively prohibitive constraints, is set to be released in late March. The movie is based on Dan Pallotta’s 2008 book, Uncharitable – How Restraints on Nonprofits Undermine Their Potential. Uncharitable was initially published by Tufts University Press. A new paperback edition was released by Brandeis University Press last year. The book offers a series of arguments against some of the primary complaints perennially levied against nonprofits. Within its first chapter, Pallotta cautions against:
- Constraints on compensation, stating that the impulse for leadership to act charitably does not automatically require self-deprivation;
- Prohibitions on risk which punish bold actions by nonprofits while rewarding timidity;
- A focus on short-term vision spurred by a perceived need for immediate gratification;
- Discouragement of paid advertising, which potentially allows nonprofits to cede attention and other results to competitors; and,
- Discouragement of investment returns, which potentially reduce or eliminate non-donation funding sources.
Uncharitable Official Movie Trailer from Kathleen Gyllenhaal on Vimeo.
By the way, Kathleen Man Gyllenhaal is a Yale Graduate with a degree in Film Studies; she married the father of Jake, of Brokeback Mountain fame, and adopted the Swedish name pronounced "Yeelenhall." Uncharitable's author has also delivered a TED Talk entitled, "The Way We Think About Charity is Dead Wrong." This guy is kinda fixated on nonprofits and tax exemption obviously. Must be some kind of nut or something. Listen to his TED Talk below.