U of S | Mailing List Archive | alt-photo-process-l | RE: Galleries & Museums in New York City - Photography

RE: Galleries & Museums in New York City - Photography

Yes, I agree that the admission is a small portion of the income, but still,
to lower this proportion of sales, they would like to call the admission a
donation also. I read about this long time ago when I was a volunteer
treasury for a non-profit organization. 

There are similar things like organization that ask for supports. They
usually give some publication or periodicals "free" but have a suggested
donation amount. If they simply ask for purchase of the publication or
subscription to a periodical, those are not considered a donation. If they
say those are free but that you are suggested to donate a certain amount to
cover the cost, those are donation.

Also in a Church, if you have a gathering and have lunch, if the cost of the
lunch is $5 and everybody *must* pay $5 for the lunch, it is not a donation.
If you announce that they don't have to pay for lunch but freewill offering
is accepted, and some someone gives $5, then that would be a donation.

This is not tax cheating. It is allowed by the IRS. The difference is how
you announce it. If you say everyone must pay it, it is not donation. If you
truly say people do not have to pay it, but they can donate, then it is a

It works both way too, for the organization and the donator, but the donator
needs to check what is tax deductible. Like if you donate to a Church, you
can deduct federal tax but not Michigan state tax. I don't know about
donating to a museum though.

I am way off topic now.   :P


> -----Original Message-----
> From: Judy Seigel [mailto:jseigel@panix.com] 
> Sent: Thursday, August 16, 2007 1:17 AM
> To: alt-photo-process-l@usask.ca
> Subject: RE: Galleries & Museums in New York City - Photography
> On Thu, 16 Aug 2007, Dave Soemarko wrote:
> >
> > For those that don't have a "suggested" price, do you mean 
> they don't 
> > suggest a price, or they charge a fix price as in selling 
> movie tickets?
> >
> > What I mean about the "tax exempt" thing is for an 
> organization to be 
> > tax-exempt as a non-profit organization (and there are different 
> > categories), the museum should make their major income from 
> donation 
> > but not from other activities like sales of things. That's why they 
> > technically don't want to "sell" their tickets but just hint it by 
> > calling it "suggested donation." So it is still a donation.
> >
> > Are the other museums that you mentioned also non-profit?
> >
> What Museum isn't "not for profit", except maybe something 
> like Madame Toussaud's? They usually have a board of 
> directors of very wealthy people who give big gifts and fund 
> various activities. Businesses donate also for the "public 
> relations."  Philip Morris, for instance, has funded or 
> contributed to funding of major shows at MoMA, tho objections 
> were made to thus "sanitizing" cigarettes. In any event, 
> admission fees don't support the museums, and yes, the 
> Whitney, MoMA, Guggenheim, et al, do charge a set admission 
> fee, though rates may vary by day or time, & they may have free times.
> However, a large portion of museum support -- also of NY 
> Public Library -- comes from sales in their shops, so there 
> goes your theory about "sales of things."  In fact the Met is 
> likely to have a sales room at the exit of every special show 
> -- you come out still on another plane and into the bright 
> lights and the ding of cash registers.... This has been 
> severely criticized, but it's not going away.
> On the 3rd (or 4th?) hand, if I make a donation to, let's 
> say, NPR, and a premium is offered for giving x amount, say a 
> tote bag with their name on it, my receipt for the donation 
> (in the form of a letter, to be submitted with my income tax) 
> subtracts the "value" of the premium from the donation, or on 
> the other hand, states that no goods were received.  (NPR & 
> NY Public Library, et al, are of course not-for-profit 
> entities, otherwise they'd be Macy's.)
> J.