"Every disaster is different and the level of media coverage, often a key variable in driving fundraising, varies widely," said Attie Poirier, an American Red Cross spokeswoman, of the disparity in contributions compared to other recent tragedies. "So it is extremely difficult to compare the level of donations we are now receiving for the Japan quake."
And while a star-studded telethon to raise funds for the Red Cross and other international charities may not yet be in the works, one could still be planned.
Organizers took 10 days to plan telethons following the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks and Haiti earthquake last year; 19 days to produce and air a telethon after the South Asian tsunami of 2004; and more than two months to organize a telethon to raise funds for relief efforts in the Gulf of Mexico following last summer's BP oil spill.
ABC News' Kristina Bergess and Amy Bingham contributed to this report.