KICKSTARTER: Dreams Really Do Come True
- 13 July 2012 by laila 1 Comments
It’s a secret I have been carrying for almost 15 years. I have shared it with a few people. Some I was glad I told, others I regretted telling and feared they would exploit that knowledge for their own gain. “Keep your cards close to your chest,” they say. I know that phrase was meant to warn people about privacy issues, strategizing moves and not giving away too much. To me it means what you are holding close to your chest is also close to your heart.
It’s a documentary idea. Something I came up with once on a road trip and has stayed with me, grown organically and became a clearer vision. My love of the story grew more intense until I felt like it was something I was driven to develop.
Then … LOCKED OUT OF KICKSTARTER!!!!
Apparently, my Canadian-ness makes my project undevelopable for the wildly popular crowd-sourcing website that has, almost single-handedly, changed the way people can reach their creative goals through public funding.
Kickstarter, launched in 2009, is an introduction service for creative types to pitch their ideas to patrons willing to fund projects in art, comics, dance, design, fashion, film & video, food, games, music, photography, publishing, technology and theatre.
Kickstarter allows people from any walk of life to submit a video about their project idea. If someone from the public decides to fund the project, they can submit a donation by credit card which will only be charged if the funding goal set by the project creator is met.
Since 2009, Kickstarter has had:
- $250 million pledged to projects
- 2 million people have backed a project
- 24,000 projects successfully funded
With that kind of success, you can see why I wanted a piece of the action!
A Kickass Video Gets Kickstart Funding
The majority of projects that get funded through Kickstarter are those whose creators have submitted a passionate, non-corporate and quirky video appeal. But let’s face it. When you are seeking funding from crowd-sourcing your idea may not translate to the crowd and around half of all Kickstarter projects don’t secure the funding they have asked for; meaning they get nothing at all.
Kickstarter’s website warns the public that creator’s have complete control and responsibility over their own projects. Meaning, as a patron, if you don’t like the way a funded project is developing, don’t blame Kickstarter. And, conversely, if your idea is funded through Kickstarter, the buck stops there. Kickstarter is the vehicle to crowd-sourced art funding and not a creative consulting business that can help you after you get the cash. If you need help, work with other past-funded creators to help you navigate the tricky development waters.
In fact, that is something that Cindy Au, Kickstarter’s Community Director is working on. Au, chosen as one of the Top 100 Most Creative People in Business in 2012 by Fast Company, wants to nurture more connections between past and new Kickstarter creators.
“We want creators to meet each other virtually, get customized feedback, and even do a project together,” she said in her profile on Fast Company.
OUYA & Four Million Reasons to Try Kickstarter
OUYA is a gaming system that allows players to enjoy off-side, independent games marketed to mobile systems on television sets. Wow. So simple. So easy. So … what? $4 million in a day from Kickstarter? $4,000,000!!
Talk about consumer-driven gaming. Indie game developers all over the world are feeling springs of excitement in their oddball little hearts.
Why is this so exciting? Well, the funding alone is huge. Kickstarter recommends that creators keep their ask low to have a better chance of reaching their goals. OUYA reached their goal by 464%.
This morning, OUYA’s developers said “Until this week, a lot of people thought we were crazy. Some still do. THANK YOU to all those who are backing us: we are focused on delivering for you.” Read the comments they have received on their Kickstarter page here.
Rut roh! Corporate gaming companies must be doing a little soul searching over the weekend. tee hee!
Hollywood screenwriter Charlie Kaufman has written a Kickstarter project called Anomalisa. According to the Kickstarter page, the project is a stop-motion animated film about a man crippled by the mundanity of his life. It’s hard to imagine Kaufman tackling that kind of subject matter after seeing his past work such as Being John Malkovich, Adaptation and Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. Huh.
But why would an already successful screenwriter with Hollywood respect use Kickstarter? According to their creator page, “Our goal is to produce this unique and beautiful film outside of the typical Hollywood studio system where we believe that you, the audience, would never be allowed to enjoy this brilliant work the way it was originally conceived. We’ve been working in the television and movie industry for years and we just want to make something ourselves. Something pure. Something beautiful.”
I could make something beautiful too … but alas … I am Canadian. So, what is the deal with that anyway?
Kickstarter has partnered with Amazon Payments to process all the credit card payments when a creator’s funding goal has been reached and, unfortunately, they only process US credit cards. Jeez, Amazon doesn’t seem to have any problem processing my Canadian credit card every time I order something from their store or even a store of one of their many partners … but I digress.
Kickstarter is well aware of the complaints of whiny Canadians like me and are promising to work on expanding their funded areas.
Until then, I guess I will have to raise funds the old-fashioned way. We will get the kids together and we will put on a show!!