Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Crowd-funding for Creative Work

Greetings from the Canberra Business Council where Matt Benetti from Pozible is speaking on Crowdfunding for film making. With crowd-funding, projects can solicit large amounts of money on-line, trough many small contributions. The talk is hosted by the ACT Office of Film, Television & Digital Media (Screen ACT). Matt commented that film, music and fine are make up about 60% of the projects for Pozible (with an average of $10,000 raised), whereas other crowd-funding services tend to have more IT projects. Matt pointed out that about 80% of the finding for your project will likely come from family and friends, rather than strangers.

When I first saw the announcement I read it as "Ponzi-ble", a "Ponzi scheme" being a form of fraudulent pyramid selling scheme which is illegal in Australia. ASIC issued guidance on crowd funding, 14 August 2012. Matt pointed out that Pozible has staff to check each applicant to deter fraud. Unlike most on-line services, Pozible require the applicant to provide identification documentation. In return Pozible charge a fee on the money received.

Matt suggested having a good video to get the message across for the project and provide no more than about eight "rewards", starting with low monetary amount ones ($5 for an acknowledgement for example). He suggested that "experiences" are powerful rewards, such as meeting the cast of the film. He suggested having some high value rewards (such as $10,000) and running a campaign for no more than 60 days.

The Innovation ACT Competition is sponsored by the ACT government to encourage university students to commercialize their inventions. The students prepare a pitch about their project, a business plan and other documentation. It would be interesting to have an option for them to prepare a crowd-sourcing campaign.

Also Matt mentioned that Pozible are discussing with a university how to crowd-fund research. It occurs to me that this could also be a good way to fund the development of free on-line courses and other open source and open access materials.

ps:  Pozible might need to do some work on their website. I ran the usual tests on their home page and encountered some problems:
  1. W3C Markup Validation Service:  153 errors in the HTML,
  2. W3C mobileOK Checker: score of 0 out of 100 for mobile compatibility with 4 critical failures.
  3. A-Content Accessibility Review (Guidelines: WCAG 2.0 Level AA): 74 known problems.
 Pozible may want to make the changes these tools suggest to improve access for people on mobile devices and those with a disability.

No comments: