|Type of business||Public-benefit corporation|
Type of site
|Founder(s)|| Perry Chen |
|Industry|| Financial services |
|Launched||April 28, 2009|
Kickstarter is an American public-benefit corporationbased in Brooklyn, New York, that maintains a global crowdfunding platform focused on creativity and merchandising. The company's stated mission is to "help bring creative projects to life". Kickstarter has reportedly received more than $4 billion in pledges from 15.5 million backers to fund 257,000 creative projects, such as films, music, stage shows, comics, journalism, video games, technology and food-related projects.
Public-benefit corporations are a specific type of corporation that allow for public benefit to be a charter purpose in addition to the traditional corporate goal of maximizing profit for shareholders. Depending on the country they may also be known as crown corporations, statutory corporations, or government owned corporations having monopoly over a specific service or market..
Brooklyn is the most populous borough of New York City, with an estimated 2,648,771 residents in 2017. Named after the Dutch village of Breukelen, it borders the borough of Queens at the western end of Long Island. Brooklyn has several bridge and tunnel connections to the borough of Manhattan across the East River, and the Verrazzano-Narrows Bridge connects Staten Island. Since 1896, Brooklyn has been coterminous with Kings County, the most populous county in the U.S. state of New York and the second-most densely populated county in the United States, after New York County.
New York is a state in the Northeastern United States. New York was one of the original Thirteen Colonies that formed the United States. With an estimated 19.54 million residents in 2018, it is the fourth most populous state. To distinguish the state from the city in the state with the same name, it is sometimes called New York State.
People who back Kickstarter projects are offered tangible rewards or experiences in exchange for their pledges.This model traces its roots to subscription model of arts patronage, where artists would go directly to their audiences to fund their work.
Kickstarter launched on April 28, 2009,by Perry Chen, Yancey Strickler, and Charles Adler. The New York Times called Kickstarter "the people's NEA". Time named it one of the "Best Inventions of 2010" and "Best Websites of 2011". Kickstarter reportedly raised $10 million funding from backers including NYC-based venture firm Union Square Ventures and angel investors such as Jack Dorsey, Zach Klein and Caterina Fake. The company is based in Greenpoint, Brooklyn.
Perry Chen is an American artist and entrepreneur best known for being the creator and principal founder of Kickstarter, the online funding platform for creative projects. He came up with the idea for Kickstarter in 2001 and launched it in 2009 along with co-founders Charles Adler and Yancey Strickler.
The New York Times is an American newspaper based in New York City with worldwide influence and readership. Founded in 1851, the paper has won 125 Pulitzer Prizes, more than any other newspaper. The Times is ranked 17th in the world by circulation and 2nd in the U.S.
The National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) is an independent agency of the United States federal government that offers support and funding for projects exhibiting artistic excellence. It was created by an act of the U.S. Congress in 1965 as an independent agency of the federal government. The NEA has its offices in Washington, D.C. It was awarded Tony Honors for Excellence in Theatre in 1995, as well as the Special Tony Award in 2016.
Andy Baio served as the site's CTO until November 2010, when he joined Expert Labs.Lance Ivy has been Lead Developer since the website launched. On February 14, 2013, Kickstarter released an iOS app called Kickstarter for the iPhone. The app was aimed at users who create and back projects and was the first time Kickstarter had an official mobile presence.
Andy Baio is an American technologist and blogger. He is the co-founder of the XOXO Festival, founder of Upcoming.org, a former CTO of Kickstarter and the author of the Waxy.org blog. In 2018, Baio was named a Kickstarter Fellow.
Expert Labs is a non-profit technology incubator intended to aid government access expertise from interested members of the public. Part of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, it was formed in November 2009, following discussions with the White House Office of Science & Technology Policy. Expert Labs is directed by longtime blogger and technology evangelist Anil Dash. Initial funding of US$500,000 is from the MacArthur Foundation.
iOS is a mobile operating system created and developed by Apple Inc. exclusively for its hardware. It is the operating system that presently powers many of the company's mobile devices, including the iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch. It is the second most popular mobile operating system globally after Android.
On October 31, 2012, Kickstarter opened projects based in the United Kingdom,followed by projects based in Canada on September 9, 2013, Australia and New Zealand on November 13, 2013, the Netherlands on April 28, 2014, Denmark, Ireland, Norway, and Sweden on September 15, 2014, Germany on April 28, 2015, France and Spain on May 19, 2015, Austria, Belgium, Italy, Luxembourg and Switzerland on June 16, 2015, Singapore and Hong Kong on August 30, 2016, Mexico on November 15, 2016 and Japan on September 12, 2017. In July 2017, Strickler announced his resignation.
The United Kingdom, officially the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland but more commonly known as the UK or Britain, is a sovereign country lying off the north-western coast of the European mainland. The United Kingdom includes the island of Great Britain, the north-eastern part of the island of Ireland and many smaller islands. Northern Ireland is the only part of the United Kingdom that shares a land border with another sovereign state—the Republic of Ireland. Apart from this land border, the United Kingdom is surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean, with the North Sea to the east, the English Channel to the south and the Celtic Sea to the south-west, giving it the 12th-longest coastline in the world. The Irish Sea lies between Great Britain and Ireland. With an area of 242,500 square kilometres (93,600 sq mi), the United Kingdom is the 78th-largest sovereign state in the world. It is also the 22nd-most populous country, with an estimated 66.0 million inhabitants in 2017.
Canada is a country in the northern part of North America. Its ten provinces and three territories extend from the Atlantic to the Pacific and northward into the Arctic Ocean, covering 9.98 million square kilometres, making it the world's second-largest country by total area. Canada's southern border with the United States is the world's longest bi-national land border. Its capital is Ottawa, and its three largest metropolitan areas are Toronto, Montreal, and Vancouver. As a whole, Canada is sparsely populated, the majority of its land area being dominated by forest and tundra. Consequently, its population is highly urbanized, with over 80 percent of its inhabitants concentrated in large and medium-sized cities, many near the southern border. Canada's climate varies widely across its vast area, ranging from arctic weather in the north, to hot summers in the southern regions, with four distinct seasons.
Denmark, officially the Kingdom of Denmark, is a Nordic country and the southernmost of the Scandinavian nations. Denmark lies southwest of Sweden and south of Norway, and is bordered to the south by Germany. The Kingdom of Denmark also comprises two autonomous constituent countries in the North Atlantic Ocean: the Faroe Islands and Greenland. Denmark proper consists of a peninsula, Jutland, and an archipelago of 443 named islands, with the largest being Zealand, Funen and the North Jutlandic Island. The islands are characterised by flat, arable land and sandy coasts, low elevation and a temperate climate. Denmark has a total area of 42,924 km2 (16,573 sq mi), land area of 42,394 km2 (16,368 sq mi), and the total area including Greenland and the Faroe Islands is 2,210,579 km2 (853,509 sq mi), and a population of 5.8 million.
Kickstarter is one of a number of crowdfunding platforms for gathering money from the public, which circumvents traditional avenues of investment.Project creators choose a deadline and a minimum funding goal. If the goal is not met by the deadline, no funds are collected (a kind of assurance contract).
Crowdfunding is the practice of funding a project or venture by raising small amounts of money from a large number of people, typically via the Internet. Crowdfunding is a form of crowdsourcing and alternative finance. In 2015, over US$34 billion was raised worldwide by crowdfunding.
An assurance contract, also known as a provision point mechanism, or crowdaction, is a game theoretic mechanism and a financial technology that facilitates the voluntary creation of public goods and club goods in the face of collective action problems such as the free rider problem.
The kickstarter platform is open to backers from anywhere in the world and to creators from the many countries like the US, UK,Canada, Australia, New Zealand, The Netherlands, Denmark, Ireland, Norway, Sweden, Spain, France, Germany, Austria, Italy, Belgium, Luxembourg, Switzerland and Mexico.
Kickstarter applies a 5% fee on the total amount of the funds raised.Their payments processor applies an additional 3–5% fee. Unlike many forums for fundraising or investment, Kickstarter claims no ownership over the projects and the work they produce. The web pages of projects launched on the site are permanently archived and accessible to the public. After funding is completed, projects and uploaded media cannot be edited or removed from the site.
There is no guarantee that people who post projects on Kickstarter will deliver on their projects, use the money to implement their projects, or that the completed projects will meet backers' expectations. Kickstarter advises backers to use their own judgment on supporting a project. They also warn project leaders that they could be liable for legal damages from backers for failure to deliver on promises.Projects might also fail even after a successful fundraising campaign when creators underestimate the total costs required or technical difficulties to be overcome.
Asked what made Kickstarter different from other crowdfunding platforms, co-founder Perry Chen said: "I wonder if people really know what the definition of crowdfunding is. Or, if there’s even an agreed upon definition of what it is. We haven’t actively supported the use of the term because it can provoke more confusion. In our case, we focus on a middle ground between patronage and commerce. People are offering cool stuff and experiences in exchange for the support of their ideas. People are creating these mini-economies around their project ideas. So, you aren’t coming to the site to get something for nothing; you are trying to create value for the people who support you. We focus on creative projects—music, film, technology, art, design, food and publishing—and within the category of crowdfunding of the arts, we are probably ten times the size of all of the others combined."
On June 21, 2012, Kickstarter began publishing statistics on its projects. [ clarification needed ] The total amount pledged was $1,523,718,656.As of February 13, 2015, there were 207,135 launched projects (7,802 in progress), with a success rate of 40%.
The business grew quickly in its early years. In 2010 Kickstarter had 3,910 successful projects and $27,638,318 pledged. The corresponding figures for 2011 were 11,836 successfully funded projects and $99,344,381 pledged; and there were 18,109 successfully funded projects, $319,786,629 pledged in 2012.
On February 9, 2012, Kickstarter hit a number of milestones. A dock made for the iPhone designed by Casey Hopkins became the first Kickstarter project to exceed one million dollars in pledges. A few hours later, a new adventure game project started by computer game developers, Double Fine Productions, reached the same figure, having been launched less than 24 hours earlier, and finished with over $3 million pledged.This was also the first time Kickstarter raised over a million dollars in pledges in a single day. On August 30, 2014, the "Coolest Cooler", an icebox created by Ryan Grepper, became the most funded Kickstarter project in history, with US$13.28 million in funding, breaking the record previously held by the Pebble smart watch.
In July 2012, Wharton professor Ethan Mollick and Jeanne Pi conducted research into what contributes to a project’s success or failure on Kickstarter. Some key findings from the analysis were that increasing goal size is negatively associated with success, projects that are featured on the Kickstarter homepage have an 89% chance of being successful, compared to 30% without, and that for an average $10,000 project, a 30-day project has a 35% chance of success, while a 60-day project has a 29% chance of success, all other things being constant.
The ten largest Kickstarter projects by funds raised are listed below. Among successful projects, most raise between $1,000 and $9,999. These dollar amounts drop to less than half in the Design, Games, and Technology categories. However, the median amount raised for the latter two categories remains in the four-figure range. There is substantial variation in the success rate of projects falling under different categories. Over two thirds of completed dance projects have been successful. In contrast, fewer than 30% of completed fashion projects have reached their goal. Most failing projects fail to achieve 20% of their goals and this trend applies across all categories. Indeed, over 80% of projects that pass the 20% mark reach their goal.
Creators categorize their projects into one of 13 categories and 36 subcategories.They are: Art, Comics, Dance, Design, Fashion, Film and Video, Food, Games, Music, Photography, Publishing, Technology and Theater. Of these categories, Film & Video and Music are the largest categories and have raised the most money. These categories, along with Games, account for over half the money raised. Video games and tabletop games alone account for more than $2 out of every $10 spent on Kickstarter.
To maintain its focus as a funding platform for creative projects, Kickstarter has outlined three guidelines for all project creators to follow: creators can fund projects only; projects must fit within one of the site's 13 creative categories; and creators must abide by the site's prohibited uses, which include charity and awareness campaigns. Kickstarter has additional requirements for hardware and product design projects. These include
The guidelines are designed to reinforce Kickstarter’s position that people are backing projects, not placing orders for a product. To underscore the notion that Kickstarter is a place in which creators and audiences make things together, creators across all categories are asked to describe the risks and challenges a project faces in producing it. This educates the public about the project goals and encourages contributions to the community.
Several creative works have gone on to receive critical acclaim and accolades after being funded on Kickstarter. Others, such as the Ouya console, have resulted in commercial failure.The documentary short "Sun Come Up" and documentary short "Incident in New Baghdad" were each nominated for an Academy Award; contemporary art projects "EyeWriter" and "Hip-Hop Word Count" were both chosen to exhibit in the Museum of Modern Art in 2011; filmmaker Matt Porterfield was selected to screen his film Putty Hill at the Whitney Biennial In 2012; author Rob Walker's Hypothetical Futures project exhibited at the 13th International Venice Architecture Biennale; musician Amanda Palmer's album "Theatre is Evil" debuted at No. 10 on the Billboard 200; designer Scott Wilson won a National Design Award from Smithsonian’s Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum following the success of his TikTok + LunaTik project; the Kickstarter funded GoldieBlox toy gained nationwide distribution in 2013; and approximately 10% of the films accepted into the Sundance, SXSW and Tribeca Film Festivals are projects funded on Kickstarter.
Numerous well-known creators have used Kickstarter to produce their work, including: musicians Jennifer Paige,Paula Cole, TLC, Amanda McBroom, De La Soul, Amanda Palmer, Daniel Johnston, Stuart Murdoch, Tom Rush and Disciple; filmmakers and actors Kevin Sorbo, Alyson Hannigan, Zach Braff, Bret Easton Ellis, Colin Hanks, Ed Begley, Jr., Gary Hustwit, Hal Hartley, Jennie Livingston, Mark Duplass, Matthew Modine, Paul Schrader, Ricki Lake, Whoopi Goldberg, Kristen Bell, John de Lancie and Zana Briski; authors and writers Dan Harmon, Kevin Kelly, Neal Stephenson, Steve Altes, and Seth Godin; photographers Spencer Tunick, Shane Lavalette, and Gerd Ludwig; game developers Tim Schafer, Keiji Inafune, Brian Fargo, and Rand Miller; designer Stefan Sagmeister; animator John Kricfalusi; comedian Eugene Mirman; animators Don Bluth and Gary Goldman; entrepreneurs Tim Ferriss, Samuel Agboola and Craig Mod; and custom guitar maker Moniker.
The Glowing Plant project was the first and only Kickstarter project to fund the development of a genetically modified organism (GMO).[ citation needed ]
|Rank||Total USD||Project name||Creator||Category||% funded||Backers||Closing date|
|1||20,338,986||Pebble Time – Awesome Smartwatch, No Compromises||Pebble Technology||Product design||4,067||78,471||2015-03-27|
|2||13,285,226||Coolest Cooler: 21st Century Cooler that's Actually Cooler||Ryan Grepper||Product design||26,570||62,642||2014-08-30|
|3||12,779,843||Pebble 2, Time 2 + All-New Pebble Core||Pebble Technology||Product design||1,277||66,673||2016-06-30|
|4||12,393,139||Kingdom Death: Monster 1.5||Kingdom Death/Adam Poots||Tabletop games||12,393||19,264||2017-01-07|
|5||10,266,845||Pebble: E-Paper Watch for iPhone and Android||Pebble Technology||Product design||10,266||68,929||2012-05-18|
|6||9,192,055||The World's Best Travel Jacket with 15 Features || BAUBAX||BAUBAX LLC||Product design||45,960||44,949||2015-09-03|
|7||8,782,571||Exploding Kittens||Elan Lee||Playing cards||87,825||219,382||2015-02-20|
|8||8,596,474||OUYA: A New Kind of Video Game Console||Ouya Inc.||Video games||904||63,416||2012-08-09|
|9||7,072,757||THE 7th CONTINENT – What Goes Up, Must Come Down||Serious Poulp||Board game||17,681||43,733||2017-10-19|
|10||6,565,782||The Everyday Backpack, Tote, and Sling||Peak Design||Product design||1,313||26,359||2016-09-10|
Both Kickstarter and project creators have canceled projects that appeared to have been fraudulent. Questions were raised about the projects in internet communities related to the fields of the projects. The concerns raised were: apparent copying of graphics from other sources; unrealistic performance or price claims; and failure of project sponsors to deliver on prior Kickstarter projects.
A small list of canceled projects includes:
In the Huffington Post article "Why Kickstarter is Corrupted" Nathan Resnick blames the rise of paid advertising, investor-backed campaigns, and crowdfunding agencies for the decline of Kickstarter as a useful tool for small inventors and creators.
Resnick cites Nebia,backed by Tim Cook and Eric Schmidt, as an example of a well funded, investor-backed project using Kickstarter purely for publicity, thus drawing donations from smaller teams.
In addition, many individual projects caused controversy.
Funding is the act of providing financial resources, usually in the form of money, or other values such as effort or time, to finance a need, program, and project, usually by an organization or company. Generally, this word is used when a firm uses its internal reserves to satisfy its necessity for cash, while the term financing is used when the firm acquires capital from external sources.
ArtistShare is the internet's first crowdfunding website. It also operates as a record label and business model for artists which enables them to fund their projects by allowing the general public to directly finance, watch the creative process, and in most cases gain access to extra material from an artist. According to Bloomberg News, the company's chief executive officer, Brian Camelio, founded ArtistShare in 2000 with the idea that fans would finance production costs for albums sold only on the Internet and Artists also would enjoy much more favourable contract terms. ArtistShare was described in 2005 as a "completely new business model for creative artists" which "benefits both the artist and the fans by financing new and original artistic projects while building a strong and loyal fan base".
Bountysource is a website for open source bounties and since 2012 also for crowdfunding. Users can pledge money for tasks using micropayment services that open source software developers can pick up and solve to earn the money. It also allows large-scale fundraising for big improvements on the project. It integrates with GitHub using its bug tracker to check if the problem is resolved and connect the resolution with GitHub's pull request system to identify the patch. When the users agree that they are satisfied and the project maintainer merged the proposed changes to the source-code, Bountysource will transfer the money acting as a trustee during the whole process.
The Oatmeal is a webcomic and humor website created in 2009 by cartoonist Matthew Boyd Inman. Inman, who lives in Seattle, updates his site with original comics, quizzes, and occasional articles. The Oatmeal has also made the transition to a series of books, featuring content from the webcomic as well as previously unpublished material.
Indiegogo is an international crowdfunding website founded in 2008 by Danae Ringelmann, Slava Rubin, and Eric Schell. Its headquarters are in San Francisco, California. The site is one of the first sites to offer crowd funding. Indiegogo allows people to solicit funds for an idea, charity, or start-up business. Indiegogo charges a 5% fee on contributions. This charge is in addition to Stripe credit card processing charges of 3% + $0.30 per transaction. Fifteen million people visit the site each month.
Broken Age is a point-and-click adventure video game developed and published by Double Fine Productions. Broken Age was game director Tim Schafer's first return to the genre since 1998's Grim Fandango, and was released for Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X, Linux, iOS, Android, PlayStation 4, PlayStation Vita, and Xbox One platforms. The game was developed in two acts; the first was released on January 28, 2014, and the second was released on April 28, 2015. A retail version of the complete game for Windows, OS X, and Linux, published by Nordic Games, was released on April 28, 2015. A Nintendo Switch version is planned for later in 2018.
Pebble is a discontinued smartwatch developed by Pebble Technology Corporation. Funding was conducted through a Kickstarter campaign running from April 11, 2012, through May 18, 2012, which raised $10.3 million; at the time, it was the most funded project in Kickstarter history. Pebble began shipping watches to Kickstarter backers in January 2013. Pebble watches can be connected to Android and iOS devices to show notifications and messages. An online app store distributes Pebble-compatible apps from many third party developers, including ESPN, Uber, Runkeeper, and GoPro.
The Ouya, stylized as OUYA, is an Android-based microconsole developed by Ouya Inc. Julie Uhrman founded the project in 2012, bringing in designer Yves Béhar to collaborate on its design and Muffi Ghadiali as VP of Product Management to put together the engineering team. Development was funded via Kickstarter, raising $8.5 million and becoming the website's eighth-highest earning project in its history at the time.
Video game development has typically been funded by large publishing companies or are alternatively paid for mostly by the developers themselves as independent titles. Other funding may come from government incentives or from private funding.
Planetary Annihilation is a real-time strategy PC game originally developed by Uber Entertainment, whose staff included several industry veterans who worked on Total Annihilation and Supreme Commander. A standalone expansion pack for Planetary Annihilation has been released which adds powerful Titan-class units, called Planetary Annihilation: TITANS.
Star Citizen is an upcoming multiplayer, space trading and combat game developed and published by Cloud Imperium Games for Microsoft Windows. Development of the game began in 2011 led by director Chris Roberts, and is being mostly financed from a large crowdfunding campaign of over $250 million. The game's full launch was originally anticipated to be in 2014, but significant expansion of gameplay features have led to postponement. Squadron 42, a single-player story-driven game set in the same universe as Star Citizen, is also being developed.
Offbeatr was a US website for crowdfunding pornography. It has been described as “Kickstarter for porn”. Project creators posted pitches for new projects, which could be media, events or objects. The user community voted on projects. If a project got enough votes, it would open for funding. If a project met its goal, then the project creator got the funds. Project creators could also sell previously created material. Projects had to be based in either United States, United Kingdom, Germany, Canada, France, Australia, or New Zealand.
Experiment, formerly called Microryza, is a US website for crowdfunding science-based research projects. Researchers can post their research projects to solicit pledges. Experiment works on the all-or-nothing funding model. The backers are only charged if the research projects reach their funding target during a set time frame. In February 2014, the site changed its name from Microryza to Experiment.com.
HEX: Shards of Fate is a massively multiplayer online trading card game (MMOTCG) by Cryptozoic Entertainment. It is the first game in the MMOTCG genre. It was funded via Kickstarter, and raised US$2,278,255 while its campaign was active. As of October 28, 2013, Hex was the 11th most-funded video game on Kickstarter. The game was officially released on January 26, 2016 and was playable on Windows, OS X and iOS.
One Spark is an annual crowdfunding festival held in Downtown Jacksonville, Florida, United States. In the event, "creators" display projects in various categories and crowdfund from attendees. The event also offers opportunities for private investment in projects as well as speakers, music, and entertainment. The event launched in 2013.
Oculus VR is an American technology company founded by Palmer Luckey, Brendan Iribe, Michael Antonov and Nate Mitchell in July 2012 in Irvine, California, now based in Menlo Park. It specializes in virtual reality hardware and software products.
Seed&Spark is a film-centric crowdfunding and SVOD platform launched in 2012.
Harebrained Schemes, LLC is an American video game developer based in Seattle, Washington. It was co-founded in 2011 by Jordan Weisman and Mitch Gitelman. Prior to founding Harebrained Schemes, Weisman and Gitelman worked together on the MechCommander and Crimson Skies franchises at FASA, another company founded by Weisman. As of mid-2015, the studio had under 60 employees.