The Freedom of the Press Foundation (FPF) now officially accepts donations made with cryptocurrencies, the non-profit announced Monday.
The move is "a natural fit" for the organization, which aims to support journalists reporting on issues within governments, said executive director Trevor Timm.
FPF – which will now accept bitcoin, bitcoin cash, ethereum, litecoin and zcash – currently has digital wallets available for direct donations, he said, although the aim is to ultimately utilize a payment processor to automatically convert the donations into fiat currency.
Decentralized technology is a tool that can help prevent online censorship, as well as prevent surveillance by certain parties, according to Timm. The decentralized nature of cryptocurrencies, in particular, can mitigate the risk of "financial censorship" by the relatively small number of traditional payment processors that currently hold a "monopoly" on fund transfers, he stated.
Timm told CoinDesk:
"If cryptocurrencies can lead to more awareness about anti-censorship, and also make it easier for potential supporters to support non-profits like Freedom of the Press Foundation, then I hope many other similar organizations follow suit in the coming months and years."
"We live in a time when journalists around the world have never been at greater risk of surveillance, arrest, or worse, and it's incredibly important that supporters of press freedom have all the available options to them to fight back," he said.
Perhaps in recognition of that mission, blockchain startup Mainframe has already made the first crypto donation, sending 1,000 ether (around $498,000 at press time) to the foundation.
Timm said that the funds would allow the FPF, which notably has NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden on its board, to expand its work, adding that "hopefully it might even inspire others to donate."
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