nom shanti nom

Sparked by something I experienced today (not this, actually), I went back to find a post I assumed I had written on this blog, but realize I had in fact written on my old, now-defunct blog, and said “drat” so now I am repeating this theory here:

A trend I have already seen and expect to see continue into the future is the increasing non-profit-ization of the US economy. As an inside-the-Beltway denizen it could be easy to assume I’m talking about the traditional foundation, charity, NGO-type stuff but I’m not. Instead I think things that traditionally have been incorporated as for-profit businesses will in the future be often incorporated as non-profits, for many reasons:

1) Technology shatters business model

2) Driven by underlying cause

3) Tax preference

4) Creative re-imagining

5) Lack of pressures inherent in for-profit models

And probably others (feel free to contribute thoughts, my vast readership!).

A good example of this is ProPublica, which is a 1, 2, and 5 kind of thing where traditional journalism models are failing but journalism is a public service. Another good example (though, since they’re defunct, maybe not the best example) is JDub Records, which is similar. I expect to see more book publishing go this route. Another good example is Yoga District, a non-profit cooperative network of yoga studios in DC.

And tonight, I went to a happy hour at Cause, a “Philanthropub” in downtown DC, which is, yes, a non-profit bar (complete with cheddar-coated fries and wings and a quinoa-lentil burger) that donates 100% of its net profits to various charities. So, I’m going to notch that as a definitive “I was right” because sometimes I get to be right!

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