Fight For The Future May Have Illegally Used Corporate Donations For Electioneering

John Arsenault called and we spoke about the registration of Corporations in Colorado.  Mr Arsenault says this simply indicates the corporation is from another state but now doing business in Colorado.  We are not experts on Colorado corporate registrations and we defer to Mr Arsenault and appreciate the clarification on this matter for us.  As a result we have updated the blog to focus only on the implications for US Non-profits and electioneering.  We leave screenshots above to simply illustrate what we are correcting. 

Anybody who has been in the fight for Artists Rights knows that one of our biggest enemies is the astroturf group Fight for the Future.   We’ve been following them for some time and have covered FFTF funding from the mysterious London Trust Media.  What we didn’t realize until yesterday is that that London Trust Media is apparently registered as a foreign corporation.  

Here is the paragraph from the IRS concerning Non-profits

I am not an attorney but this would seem to make many of the activities Fight For the Future has been involved in illegal under FEC IRS regulations.  In particular a communication urging a vote against a particular candidate is off limits.  Here is just one example:

 Lets be clear here, Fight For The Future opposed TPP NOT because they were worried about American jobs or environmental regulations.  They opposed TPP because it did not force our trading partners to weaken copyright protections for artists!!!!  Regardless, this sort of position against specific candidates would seem to violate paragraphs  IRS rules on non-profits.  This could also would seem to put their Massachusetts non-profit status in doubt. (FACT:  in an email dated  May 26th 2016 I pointed out the apparent non-profit violation to Fight For The Future’s accountant  and FFTF board members, yet, Fight For The Future continues to claim they are a compliant non-profit. See addendum for correspondence.)

If you’d like to help take the bad guys down I suggest you:

  1. Write the FEC and complain about activities of this foreign corporation funding activity that urged voters not to vote for  specific candidates.  Ask them to investigate. They are the experts! Warning the Federal Elections Commision does not make it easy to complain about this activity. Imagine that! Refer them to this blog.  This is the best I can do  Updated: Don’t do this it is not FEC but matter but IRS matter. As Mr Arsenault notes LTM is within it’s rights to donate to FFTF.
  2. Complain to the Massachusetts Secretary of the Commonwealth. Again they don’t make it easy.   What you want to do is make sure they realize you are complaining about Center For Rights in Action (This is the real name of Fight For The Future). The issue is electioneering and opposing candidates. Main Number:Toll Free: 1-800-392-6090 (within Massachusetts only)Telephone: 617-727-7030 TTY: 617-878-3889 Fax: 617-742-4528 E-mail:



Here is the correspondence with their CPA indicating that on May 26 2016 I made them aware of the violations.

Mr Alario:

I hope this finds you well.  I have some questions about Fight For The Future Education Fund.  As a public charity they have certain obligations and responsibilities under the law. 


I’m looking at the FFTF Education Fund website  right now and the financials link redirects to link for Center For Media Rights 990 IRS form. 
Although I’m sure this was just a mistake as the two organizations have intertwined management and web resources,  it is a legal requirement that you make available to the public the 990 IRS form for FFTFEF, including the Schedule B.  Please send me a copy or kindly tell me where I can find it on the web?
I’m concerned that FFTF Education Fund appears to have violated some IRS rules for public charities.
Political Campaign Intervention
“Contributions to political campaign funds or public statements of position made on behalf of the organization in favor of or in opposition to any candidate for public office clearly violate the prohibition against political campaign activity. Violation of this prohibition may result in revocation of tax-exempt status and/or imposition of certain excise taxes.”
IRS Compliance Guide
for 501(c)(3) Public Charities
Lobbying Activity
“A public charity is not permitted to engage in substantial legislative activity (commonly referred to as lobbying). An organization will be regarded as attempting to influence legislation if it contacts, or urges the public to contact, members or employees of a legislative body for purposes of proposing, supporting or opposing legislation, or advocates the adoption or rejection of legislation.-
IRS Compliance Guide
for 501(c)(3) Public Charities
FFTF urged the public to contact members of congress and their employees proposing, supporting and opposing TPP legislation.  Including statements urging voters to vote against specific candidates;  organized a likely illegal “comment bombing” of the Copyright Office public consultation on section 512 of The Copyright Act.
FFTF claims to be a Non-Profit
Oh but read the fine print.  They clearly know what they are up to: