Re: If it was one or two...
> perhaps there is some better way they can cover these costs (make a 10% donation themselves and write if off against tax or something)
Corporate GiftAid allows donations to be made before tax. Which isn't exactly the same thing, but helps.
> a company cannot be expected to support every possible charity at zero cost out of the goodness of its own heart. Because is doesn't have one.
I guess there are two points here:
One, I guess there is a suspicion that their true costs are a lot less than they are claiming, and possibly, since charity processing is a small percentage of what they do, a marginal activity where the extra resources they need to support it are effectively nil.
Secondly, whilst corporates don't 'have a heart' as their 'fiduciary duty' to their shareholders tends towards prioritising short term shareholder value, there is an established 'Corporate Social Responsibility' aspect to most companies. Arguably there's a role for Government in facilitating more of this, to emphasise the need for a company to also take into account the needs of all their stakeholders - not just shareholders, but their customers too.
> The sheer number of charities that are going around these days is ridiculous.
It is, and a company should not have to have the burden of deciding which ones are legitimate and worthy of its support. That's the job of the Charities Commission, which arguably has become overly politicised, and is no-longer fit for purpose.
> Personally I am sick to the back teeth with all the chuggers
Actually, most charities don't like them much either, not only do they give the sector a bad name, but they are a tremendously inefficient way of raising money.
Personally I prefer to donate via platforms like JustGiving or Kiva, where you can see a range of worthy causes and make a choice of where to help out. But I object to middlemen making a profit out of such donations - whether that be EE or PayPal. Cover costs, yes, if you must, but don't set those fees at levels that make me wonder whether your costs are really that high.