$200k raised to buy alleged Ford video to be donated to Canadian organizations - Macleans.ca

$200k raised to buy alleged Ford video to be donated to Canadian organizations


TORONTO – Money raised to buy an alleged video appearing to show Toronto Mayor Rob Ford smoking crack cocaine will instead be going to four Canadian organizations.

Gawker, the U.S. website behind the fundraiser, had promised to donate the roughly $200,000 it collected if the video didn’t surface.

A message posted on the website Thursday said the cash will be split four ways between the Somali Canadian Association of Etobicoke, the South Riverdale Community Health Centre, Unison Health and Community Services and the Ontario Regional Addictions Partnership Committee.

It said each organization will receive about $46,200.

Osman Ali, director of the Somali Canadian group, said he’s “very pleased” by the sudden windfall.

The funds will go toward hiring a youth worker to help local youngsters “stay away from guns and gang violence,” he said.

The group submitted a proposal for the funding and learned Thursday it had been successful, though only for half the amount it sought, Ali said.

Asked whether he was concerned about benefiting from the controversial fundraiser, Ali said only that “God has mysterious ways of helping.”

Gawker said Indiegogo, the crowdfunding site that hosted the campaign, and PayPal, which processed the payments, each withheld part of the money for their services.

In the message, Gawker editor John Cook said he’s “disappointed” the money won’t serve to buy the alleged video, which he says he has seen.

The website previously said it had lost contact with the alleged video’s owner amid the growing scandal surrounding the mayor.

Ford has said that he does not use crack cocaine and the alleged video does not exist.


$200k raised to buy alleged Ford video to be donated to Canadian organizations

  1. And who is auditing Gawker, Indiegogo, and Paypal to see that there are no undeclared hold backs. After all, anyone willing to embark on a drive-by smear campaign without ever producing one shred of evidence can’t be trusted, in my opinion.

    • Er, to answer your question, that would be the IRS, as they are legal corporations that file corporate tax returns each year. I’m sure you feel the same way about, say, the Toronto Sun, right?

      • Right; and the CRA audits and caught Mike Duffy, correct? The only thing the tax collection agencies worry about is collecting tax on income. Hence, should your local friendly drug dealer or money launderer feel the need to declare his income, they will collect the tax, but not turn the individual in to the police. So, my question, facetious as it may be, remains: who is the watchdog?

        • People file their income taxes with the CRA. The issue with Duffy was claiming expenses to be reimbursed by the Senate, the CRA has nothing to do with that. *After* claiming/getting reimbursed by the Senate, a Senator would then file their income taxes. Even the audit he eventually underwent was done, again, by the Senate, not the CRA.

          And whether drug dealers launder their money to file taxes or not doesn’t change the fact that eventually the video will some day leak out…

          • Thanks for the gratuitous and useless lesson in English comprehension. You have just repeated my point under the guise of rather obtuse input. They submit their taxes to IRS or CRA, but only do an audit if they figure something is going on. So my question remains, who is doing the auditing, in a watchdog type function, to ensure that none of the three principals involved are skimming some of these proceeds.

          • Let me mansplain this to you: the expenses Duffy fudged were SENATE expenses, filed with the Senate. He did not file these expenses with the CRA in order to reduce his tax burden or get some kind of refund the way a self-employed businessperson would. The CRA would only see his final income, not how it was calculated when he was paid by the Chamber. The CRA would audit him if they felt he was fudging his TAX deductions only.

            Revenue services (at least in the Western world) routinely conduct random audits of both personal and corporate tax-filers to try to keep people and companies honest. Why this obsession with whether Gawker or Kickstarter have been audited? Do you care if Mayor Ford has ever had a tax audit, or Maclean’s?

  2. There never was a video

    • there was a video – and it was realistic enough to create an impression on three journalists from two organizations that it showed Rob Ford doing something that looks an awful lot like smoking crack.

      That doesn’t have to be the end of the story and there is always the possibility a mistake was made or footage was edited or whatever. But to say there’s no video is simply obtuse.

    • Some day that video will, certainly will, leak out. My bet is Sept/Oct of 2015, but even if not then, a copy is going to be released to the public some day.

  3. Glad to see the Mayor’s alleged questionable habits have created a good outcome.

  4. Once again the media has completely embarassed itself. It looks good on them and their gotcha! type of so-called journalism. No wonder in 2013’s Gallup poll only 23% had any trust in them. And they wonder why people are turned off and their customer base is rapidly declining.

    • Their paper-based paid content model is rapidly declining, but overall media interaction from consumers has soared in the age of the internet. Hence the fact Gawker got so much publicity from attempting to buy the video…