In lieu of a picture tonight I decided to write about something I see going on that’s troubling.
Kevin James just turned down Kickstarter. “We nearly Kickstarted the budget back in November,” he said. “But now I’m feeling like that’s not fair to real indie filmmakers who need the help. Unlike back when I made Clerks in ’91, I’ve got access to money now — so I should use that money and not suck any loot out of the crowd-funding marketplace that might otherwise go to some first-timer who can really use it.”
When it first started, Kickstarter was for the independent artists who would never have gotten funded by the big corporations. But ever since veronica mars threw a project on there and made way more than what they were asking for, the celebrities have been drooling.
It’s a very simple idea, and I loved it. You have an idea, you have no money, no name, no way to get it off the ground. All you have is passion, drive, and determination. Well guess what here’s a site full of people like you who will help and receive help and it can be one big community of artists doing great things! Of course until celebrities get involved. See they have something, several things, that independent artists just don’t have. But the main thing is a name.
Bear with me a moment while I explain exactly why this is going to destroy Kickstarter for the people it was meant for.
Crowd-Sourcing, that’s what its called. You are attempting to get a bunch of people you don’t know to donate to something you are throwing your all into. The first trick is to get people to FIND your listing. This is hard enough without people searching for famous celebrities listings. If you don’t get picked as a staff favorite you pretty much have no chance. Even IF they find it AND like your video and your project getting them to believe you will finish it is yet ANOTHER obstacle. With celebrity comes a name that people feel they can hold accountable.
People like to donate to things other’s have donated to because they figure if they like it maybe its good. However the floodgates have now been opened for people to say “who is this guy? That’s not Zach Braff nope not donating.”
What’s worse is this could scare people away from posting things because they know they don’t have that name recognition that others have. The co-founder of Kickstarter Yancey Strickler spoke on this earlier.
“The thing is, if Michael Bay came along and wanted to do a Kickstarter we’d probably tell him, please don’t,” Strickler said at the time. “I would never want to scare the girl who wants to do a $500 lithography project, ’cause that’s why we started this thing. We think we have a moral obligation to her.”
Very well put, however I feel that Kickstarter will become commercialized and over run by celebs who could easily fund their projects themselves or with a studio’s green light but will whine about having to have their character drink Coke instead of Pepsi, or don’t want to put in the energy to argue down a studio on small issues like that. Pretty much it will begin to be dominated by people who don’t need our money but as shown previously in human history, we will continue to give it to them.
I had a Kickstarter that failed for several reasons one being advertisement and placement. I’ll be listing it again utilizing a different marketing strategy, I still remain hopeful for this site. It has amazing potential. I’d just hate to have to re-list my project next to George Clooney and Denzel Washington’s projects.
Thanks for reading