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Facebook now lets you ask friends for fundraising money

A new tool lets you solicit funds for things like tuition or emergency expenses.

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Now you can raise money on Facebook for personal causes.

Facebook

Need to raise money for your dog's surgery? Facebook thinks your friends can help.

The social network on Thursday unveiled a tool that lets you set up a "personal fundraiser" and hit up friends to contribute.

The idea is to raise money for yourself or someone you know. For now, you'll only be able to ask for funds related to six different categories: education, such as tuition or books; medical expenses, like treatments or procedures; a pet's medical expenses, like veterinary procedures; crisis relief, like natural disasters; a personal emergency, like a car accident or theft; or funeral expenses.

If you want to start a personal fundraiser, the social network will conduct a review of the cause, which will take 24 hours.

Facebook didn't go into much detail about the process. Eventually the company wants to automate more of it, said Naomi Gleit, vice president of Facebook's social good team, in a blog post. That suggests right now there's at least some level of human moderation. Facebook didn't immediately respond to a request for clarification.

The tool is almost exactly like the service GoFundMe, which also lets people ask for funds related to personal causes.

The new tool underscores Facebook's desire to be more than a place for baby pictures or political rants. The social network also wants to be a channel to help its almost 2 billion users. CEO Mark Zuckerberg last month released a nearly 6,000-word manifesto on Facebook's mission, and the impact the social network can make on society. Part of that includes using Facebook to help prevent suicides and help people get in touch with government representatives.

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