The site uses your wealth ranking to invite you to share your wealth with others. It told me, for example, I could buy 25 fruit trees for farmers in Honduras for just $8 (as opposed to 12 organic oranges for the same price) or a $30 first aid kit for a village in Haiti (instead of an ER DVD box set). However silly these suggestions may be (who spends $30 to watch ER?), charitable giving is clearly the point.
According to the site, Poke "wanted to do something which would help people understand, in real terms, where they stand globally. They want us to realize that, in fact, most of us who are able to view this web page are in the privileged minority."
Even though I am sure their motivation is good or even admirable, this sort of presentation irritates me quite a bit. I am afraid I get really
riled when people abuse statistical data whether deliberately for effect/impact or out of ignorance. No doubt at all that we are a privileged minority: unfortunately sloppy stats undermines the credibility and persuasiveness of the rest of the message for me. Context is not taken into account: I cannot buy even one
fruit tree for $8 where I live; obviously a dollar goes much farther where one can buy 25 fruit trees for $8. Are those Honduran fruit farmers setting up shop here
? Of course not. The income figures should first be adjusted as to cost of living (among other factors) in order to be able to rank them with any fairness and accuracy. As it stands this ranking has no real value other than to amuse.