It’s a topic that has come up with our readers a number of times in recent weeks. PayPal is yet another company that has taken the wrong side on some important social issues, most recently by announcing that they will no longer be expanding their offices in North Carolina after the state signed a law that requires “transgendered persons” to use public restrooms corresponding to their gender of birth. Political correctness strikes again.
Many conservatives are now boycotting PayPal, and I don’t blame them. But this creates a dilemma for us with no simple solution.
PayPal is now, and has long been, the preferred gateway for online businesses and nonprofits to accept payments and donations. It’s relatively easy to set up, fairly robust, and integrates well with bank accounts and accounting software. It has been our only method of online donation acceptance since we opened up shop here in 2014.
It is also the only payment gateway that integrates with our donor management software, which tracks the donations of and manages correspondence with our donors — close to a thousand of them as of this morning. This software is responsible for ensuring that people get emailed receipts at the time of donation, and also generates year-end reports for tax purposes. Any of our donors can log in at any time to see what they’ve donated so far this year, last year, and for all of time.
I emailed the company that develops our (otherwise very good) donor management software to ask about whether it accepts alternative payment options, and right now, it doesn’t.
This means that in order to move away from PayPal, I’m going to have to identify a comparable service (with comparable processing fees) and a donor management option to match. Then, I’m going to have to migrate all of our records over to the new system to ensure that no donor data is lost. We will also have to work with the dozens of folks who have set up recurring donations through PayPal. We will also have to consider our advertisers, who pay us via PayPal as well. (It really is ubiquitous.) I am the only full-time staff member of 1P5, so I can’t delegate this. I’ve got to go through the whole process, soup to nuts, and make sure I don’t break anything.
To say that this is a daunting challenge while maintaining our current content production is an understatement.
So I ask for your patience in this matter. I am aware that this is a concern. It is for me as well. But there’s simply not enough time in the day for us to move quickly on this. In the mean time, we still need your financial support, and we ask that you prayerfully consider continuing to help keep us funded during this time.
If you want to support us but you absolutely refuse to use PayPal any longer, there is another option. You can send in donations by mail. Please note that I process each check manually, entering in the donor info by hand into our system. It’s a time-consuming process, so I ask for your patience here as well.
We want to work with the kind of companies we can be proud to be associated with, and this is definitely on our radar. If you want to offer a few prayers that we can find what we need soon and transition without too much trouble, I’d be very appreciative.
Steve Skojec is the Founding Publisher and Executive Director of OnePeterFive.com. He received his BA in Communications and Theology from Franciscan University of Steubenville in 2001. His commentary has appeared in The New York Times, USA Today, The Washington Post, The Washington Times, Crisis Magazine, EWTN, Huffington Post Live, The Fox News Channel, Foreign Policy, and the BBC. Steve and his wife Jamie have seven children.