(TMU) – At the start of the coronavirus crisis, Twitter CEO and co-founder Jack Dorsey shocked the world with his promise to donate $1 billion, or about 28% of his wealth, to help with the economic fallout from the pandemic. Now, Dorsey says that he plans to give away all of his money within his lifetime.
This week, Dorsey appeared on an episode of the “Yang Speaks” podcast for an interview about artificial intelligence, universal basic income, and meditation, among other topics. During the interview, he spoke about his recent philanthropic efforts, and discussed how the pandemic has accelerated the move towards automation and the need for a universal basic income.
“I live by the principle of everything is connected, so if someone is in pain, I’m in pain, ultimately, over time…I want to make sure that I’m doing whatever I can in my lifetime to help that through my companies’ works, through my own personal giving,” he said.
“I’m in a situation that I never imagined when I was a kid or [even] when I was 25. I didn’t have any aspect of what money would mean until I was, probably 35.I’m so grateful, but part of gratitude is not just saying I’m grateful, it’s doing. I want to give out all my money in my lifetime. I want to see the impacts, selfishly, in my lifetime. I want to make sure that we’re helping people,” he added.
The interview was published as Dorsey was announcing his $5 million contributions to Yang’s universal basic income organization “Humanity Forward.”
Dorsey says that universal basic income is “long overdue” and he believes that “the only way we can change policy is by experimenting and showing case studies of why this works.”
“Every single field is going to be touched by automation, and UBI to me represents a floor. A floor that people can stand on, and have the knowledge and peace of mind that they could survive and eat and feed their children while they are learning how to transition into this new world,” Dorsey says.
Yang says Humanity Forward plans use Dorsey’s donation to distribute small cash payments of $250 to nearly 20,000 people who have been affected by the recent economic consequences of the coronavirus pandemic. So far, Humanity Forward has given away about $2 million in financial assistance to people struggling in the current economic conditions.
“Not only will Jack’s donation directly impact tens of thousands of people in need during the current economic downturn, it will help Humanity Forward and our movement continue to make a case for universal basic income in the United States. We know UBI for every American is possible, and this $5 million from Start Small is going to help demonstrate what is possible for families across the country,” Yang said in a statement.
This donation to Humanity Forward is a part of the #startsmall initiative that Dorsey launched last month. Dorsey tweeted a link to a document where information about the donations will be posted, including the amount of the donation and the recipient.
I’m moving $1B of my Square equity (~28% of my wealth) to #startsmall LLC to fund global COVID-19 relief. After we disarm this pandemic, the focus will shift to girl’s health and education, and UBI. It will operate transparently, all flows tracked here: https://t.co/hVkUczDQmz
— jack (@jack) April 7, 2020
Dorsey has been known to make radically generous moves that are almost unheard of for people in his position. In 2015, Twitter was forced to lay off about 8 percent of its employees. Dorsey donated $200 million in Twitter stock back to the employee grant pool as a consolation. At the time this was about a third of the stake that he had in Twitter.