Burning Man, a famous art festival that takes place each year in the Black Rock Desert in Nevada, announced it will accept bitcoin donations this year.
Coinbase was chosen to process all the payment. In addition to being reliable and safe, the startup also eliminates the need of paying transaction fees, as the company doesn’t charge fees to non-profit organizations.
Burning Man is a non-profit organization that addresses social problems, inspires a sense of art and culture and lifts the human spirit.
The organization’s CEO Marian Goodell said: “Donations will help provide more grants, training and support to creators of radically interactive art and events on and off the playa, fund civic programs, teach communities the power of collaboration, strengthen our infrastructure and make the Burning Man experience accessible year-round.”
“Accepting Bitcoin for donations is an experimental first step. We plan to explore other possibilities in the future, including expanding Bitcoin to the ticket-buying process,” he added.
During the festival, people do not donate money, instead, they give away such things as clothing, massages and food.
Donating something without anything in return is part of the festival’s philosophy. The organization’s co-founder Larry Harvey wrote 10 Principles reflecting the culture of Burning Man. Some of them state: “Our community values creative cooperation and collaboration. We strive to produce, promote and protect social networks, public spaces, works of art, and methods of communication that support such interaction.”
“Burning Man is devoted to acts of gift giving. The value of a gift is unconditional. Gifting does not contemplate a return or an exchange for something of equal value.”
The decision to include bitcoin donations is logical for the organization, as it has always been open to innovations in culture and technologies. Earlier, such companies as Electronic Frontier Foundation and Wikipedia started accepting donations in the digital currency as well.
The donations in cryptocurrency are tax-deductible, as bitcoin is defined as a type of property. The donors can deduct donations in bitcoin that would otherwise be subject to capital gains tax. After giving away the money, the donor will receive the transaction receipt via email.
This aspect has driven the usage of digital currency by various charitable firms. Thus, the Virginia-based charitable organization, called United Way, adopted bitcoin earlier in September.
UNICEF, the US nonprofit organization providing assistance to children and mothers in developing countries accepts bitcoin in Canada, which is tax-deductible in the country. Meantime, the company has not yet integrated payments in the digital currency in the US.
The first Burning Man event was held on June 21 in 1986 on a San Francisco beach. Within years, the popularity of the festival has been steadily growing with the rising number of people participating in the event. The Burning Man is all about culture, self-reliance and art.