We did it. In less than 24 hours we raised enough to not only replace Bucktman's lens, but to upgrade it to the 70-200 f/2.8 IS II.
Adorama was very generous and gave us an amazing deal on the lens ($2200 out the door with some other goodies and next-day air shipping), I can't thank them enough. Helen Oster was awesome and got things rolling in no time flat.
I've closed down the ChipIn page. I don't want to be resonsible for any more money!
If you didn't get a chance to give this time around, I would suggest looking around in your own community for chances to give and/or volunteer. You really can make a difference, and I can't even begin to explain how good it makes you feel.
Thank you all very much.
Here is your chance to earn your brownie points for the day!
For those that do not know the story, BucketMan is a POTN member that recently found out that a 70-200 f/2.8 IS he purchased last year off of Craig's List was stolen. Long story short, he just found out that he had to return the lens and is out for the money that he spent on it.
Here is the thread:
Here is the relevant conclusion:
Many POTN members stepped up in the thread and offered to send BucketMan some money to help get a new 70-200 f/2.8 IS. I can say with pretty good certainty that he will not accept anyone's money, I know a lot of people like him. For this reason, I decided to take it upon myself to set up a Karma Fund that POTN members can donate to to help buy a new lens that we can send to him.
I have also been in contact with Adorama to see if they would be willing to cut us a good deal on a 70-200 f/2.8 IS. I'm still waiting to hear back, but I want to get the fund rolling and see just how much we'll have to offer.
I have set up a fund that people can use PayPal to contribute to the fund. I have chosen to use www.chipin.com for this because it is free and allows you to set a goal. This goal will show everyone exactly how much has been donated and how much more may be needed.
The donations will go to my PayPal account. I know that I am asking a lot of people to trust me on this. I am not going to profit in any way on this. This is the only way I can see to make this work.
In order to help put people's minds at ease, I will do a little FAQ here.
Who I am:
My name is Derek Cecil and I live at 522 E Center St in Madison, SD, USA.
Why I am doing this:
Because I think it is the right thing to do. Just like BucketMan, my wife and I recently had a baby and I know how tight money is right now.
Can you trust me:
All I can do is give you my word that I will do nothing other than spend you money for what I am stating here.
What I am contributing:
I plan on making about a $50 contribution, but it won't be through the ChipIn page. Paypal fees will be pulled out of your contributions. Because of this, we will actually be about 3% short of the stated ChipIn goal. 3% of $1800 is $54. I will cover that shortfall when I buy the lens.
Where I am getting the lens from:
I have talked to Helen Oster at Adorama and she is seeing if there is any way that Adorama can help us out on this. Hopefully they will be able to cut us a deal on the lens. If they cannot, I will likely try to talk to B&H as well.
What happens if we don't raise nearly enough to buy BucketMan a new lens:
If we don't get enough, I plan on sending the money directly to BucketMan to help him defray the cost of buying a lens for himself.
What happens if we raise too much:
I have set the goal at $1800. If we get that much and we are able to get a better deal on the lens, I will take some input and get BucketMan some accessories with the remaining cash. Anything additional left over I would like to donate to a firefighter relief acency (BucketMan is a firefighter).
What if you do not have a PayPal account:
If you would like to mail me a check or money order to add to the fund, send me an email at: email@example.com. I am able to change the target number at the ChipIn page and will lower it by your donation amount after I get the check.
You can also pay by credit card through PayPal, without having to set up a PayPal account.
Again, can you trust me:
The only thing I can offer is my honor. I hope that you will trust me and we can do a great thing for a great person. If you need further assurance, email me and I can give you my phone number.
If there is anything I did not touch on here, please let me know. I am trying to be as transparent as possible with this.
Where to donate:
Please note that the meter uses a flash player and doesn't seem to update well with Firefox and possibly some other browsers. It works great with IE and Opera.