This ‘first on the first’ post is dedicated to crowd-funding in general – and Kickstarter in particular.
Do you know about Kickstarter? Or crowd-funding? Crowd-funding – aka crowd-sourcing, crowd-fundraising, micropatronage, etcetc – is the art of using social media/the interwebs to fund projects, ideas, and efforts of individuals, groups, and organizations, both for profit and not-for-profit. This process of pooling money and becoming a force for good is nothing new, of course; it simply has found a new vehicle which casts a much wider net. No pun intended.
It all comes, I think, from our inherent need as humans to feel connected. To feel connected to something larger, something greater than ourselves. To get out of our lives and into the wider world. To tangibly see our efforts come to fruition. Since we’ve become a thought-culture or idea-nation, we’ve literally taken the fruits of our labors out of our hands and put them into the ether, hoping that what we think is enough. That’s why we cling to our ideals – or political agendas – or sports teams. That’s why our discourse is robbed of civility. Because we are what we think and what we think is, quite possibly, the only thing we have to show for our hard work any more. We used to have the food on the table with well-made chairs around it and fine linens to dress it. But as we’ve enjoyed better living through industry – and chemistry and plastics, we’ve lessened the evidence of our individual contributions to this world. A world that no longer encompasses the 5-mile radius from the house in which you were born. It is a world which encompasses, literally, the world.
(steps gingerly off the soapbox)
Hence, crowd-funding. And organizations and sites like Kickstarter.
I’ve had a poke around that site and here’s a sample of what I’ve found:
Obduction: and all-new, immersive adventure game from the award-winning creators of Myst
Welkin NYC: children’s clothing by the city, for the city
Skyline Chess: bringing the city to your chess board
FiYA Studios: a pop-up art gallery project
Beyond Flour: a new kind of gluten-free cookbook
3D MVP Lacrosse: for iOS + Android devices
New York Tattoo: spirit of the Gael production (includes tartan-/plaid-wearing performers)
Ever, Jane: the virtual world of Jane Austen
So, my ‘first on the first’ is to contribute to a Kickstarter campaign. Which one did I choose? Maybe I shouldn’t I tell you, and let you guess in the comments. I’ll do that. You have today until 8pm Eastern to guess, after which time I’ll post the *POST UPDATE* revealing my decision. Dramatic, non? So hit the comment button, people. And I’d love to hear your reasoning behind what you think was my choice. Remember, you have until 8. Until then…
PS: Bonus points for those of you who have this song stuck in your head after reading this post.
** POST UPDATE **
I ‘kickstarted’ two: a lacrosse game + Ever, Jane.
Two, you ask? Yes – and here’s why:
When I went to contribute to the lacrosse game, I got a message that the founders were pulling the record, disallowing any further funding. So I sent them a message. And not confident about when I would hear back, I went ahead and contributed to ‘Ever, Jane’. I’ve downloaded the client and been exploring Regency England. It has been delightful! Then I heard from the founders of the lacrosse game who confirmed that they were no longer accepting contributions. They suggested I contribute to this lacrosse project instead: Lacrosse Video Game for PS3, XBox, & PC. It looked great, so I backed it too.