Elsewhere online
July 21, 2016

Correction: Funding for Nonprofit’s Google ‘Transparency’ Campaign

An item in Wednesday’s Philanthropy Today summarized an article from SiliconBeat, a San Jose Mercury News technology blog, about funding for the Campaign for Accountability, the watchdog nonprofit behind a Google Transparency Project that has issued highly critical reports about the tech giant's ties to federal agencies and influence on internet-privacy policy. The article suggested funds for the effort may have come from the Bill & Melinda Gates and William and Flora Hewlett foundations.

The SiliconBeat article stated that the Campaign for Accountability is a project of the New Venture Fund, which has received significant financial support from the two foundations. SiliconBeat reported it had made a nominal donation to the watchdog group and received a tax receipt from the New Venture Fund.

SiliconBeat has since updated its post with new information from Daniel Stevens, deputy director of the Campaign for Accountability, who said his group is “a project of Hopewell Fund, a different nonprofit organization.” Lee Bodner, president of the New Venture Fund, told the blog that his group created Hopewell Fund last year and shares staff with it, but Hopewell runs its own projects with different donors. Mr. Stevens and Mr. Bodner, who is a Hopewell director, said the Gates and Hewlett foundations have not given to Hopewell.

Mr. Stevens said the tax receipt sent to SiliconBeat mistakenly linked his group to New Venture Fund due to an error by Arabella Advisors, a philanthropy-consulting firm that works with both New Venture and Hopewell and provides administrative support to the Campaign for Accountability.