I found this really cool Kickstarter campaign while perusing the interwebs today. It’s a documentary project on the brewing history of Brooklyn, NY, and the people making it are looking for $20,000 in funding to cover original music, insurance, and post production costs. It’s a fairly high number, but they say they’re fully committed to finishing the project even if they fall short of their fundraising target.
If you’re not familiar with sites like Kickstater, Indiegogo, and Crowdfunder, they’re fundraising platforms where people can post about a business they’re starting or a product they’re producing, and people can pledge money to support the project.
While I don’t necessarily subscribe to the belief that we live in a meritocracy – you know, if you try hard enough, you’ll succeed – I do believe these sites encourage an entrepreneurial spirit that gives people a real chance at success. They’re also great places to raise money for a good cause or a charity event.
I was truly touched, for instance, when Karen Klein (the bus monitor who was tortured by those punk kids in Greece, NY) was given over $700,000 raised by complete strangers on Indiegogo. The original goal was to raise $5,000 in order to send Mrs. Klein on a nice vacation, but as the story spread nationwide, the campaign went viral, and the woman became $700,000 richer in a matter of a month or so.
With regards to small startups using it, presenting their ideas to total strangers with the hopes they’ll be given money for execution, I say, if you’ve got the balls to put your heart and soul out there, then do it.
It sounds crazy even as I write it. I mean, hell, it’s hard for me to squeeze dough out of my loved ones. But plenty of startups have met their fundraising goals well before their “deadlines” and used the money to get their businesses off the ground. I hope that’s what happens for these guys because I’d love to see their movie.
For more information, check out the Brewed in Brooklyn Kickstarter page.