In its decision dated 11 October 2017, the independent Charities Registration Board (the Board) declined Digital Democracy Limited’s (the Company) application for registration as a charity.
To qualify for registration, a company must be established and maintained for charitable purposes.
The Company’s purposes are to provide the public with information on government bills, and to provide online digital polls for the public to vote on government bills. The Company had submitted it had charitable purposes to advance education, promote good citizenship and advance politics.
The Board considers the Company’s purposes are not charitable because summarising information from publically available sources on a website and polling the public on government bills is not sufficiently structured to advance education or promote good citizenship, or otherwise advance a purpose in a way the law recognises as charitable.
The Board considers it is not possible to say whether the promotion of popular government bills will advance a public benefit in a similar way to a previously accepted charitable purpose. The Supreme Court in Greenpeace held that the popularity of a piece of legislation will not mean it is for the public benefit in a charitable sense.
The Board’s full decision can be read at the link below.