Comedy website SomethingAwful’s active forums have raised over $50,000 for the Japanese tsunami relief – all to ban an irritating member.
Forum member “Universal Module” posted a thread asking for members to help him out with his homework. He wanted assistance with a “10 to 15 hot narritive [sic] of a doctor meeting an injured criminal at an abandoned building”.
The post was met with ridicule immediately before a moderator stepped in and submitted a “Mod challenge,” where users accused of posting bad threads must complete an activity or face a ban.
Soon, another member responded to the request by posting a video of him and some friends reenacting famous scenes from 80s brat pack hit The Breakfast Club. By completing the challenge before the original poster he could decide his fate – but the thread took a charitable turn when the winner “Jick Magger” said it’s either donate $10 to the forums, or $10 to an organisation that helps schools, the homeless or the poor with health care.
Another, Dr Scoofles, suggested “Maybe to the Japanese earthquake / tsunami fund?” and the donations began to roll in.
By page 8, others had been donating to charity and posting screenshots of their e-tickets as evidence. Over $2800 dollars was raised by the 17th of March, and now, six days later, they have collectively raised over $50,000 dollars and the effort is being promoted on all sub-forums.