Crowdfunding: doing by learning/learning by doing(connected to the VideoDocumenting&PostProd sessions

Proposal for a session at Living on the Edge, 29 October - 3 November in Matera, Italy.

This page is a wiki, so feel free to add your ideas (you need to be logged in though).

This session is connected with the Video Documentation Session. Here is how they are placed in time:

Initial Video Documentation discussion - Oct 29th

Crowdfunding session - Nov 2nd

Post Production workshop - Nov 3rd

The point is to get a ready to start CF4LOTE4 campaign (or almost ready to start - could be an action plan: who does what when so that, in time, a crowdfunding campaign for lote 2014 can happen) and learn how to actually get it. We have started discussing it here. There is also a google doc which I’m using to keep a wiki less wordy. There is no special need of usin the google doc.

During the session we will try to prototype the CFcampaign, plan and get ready for following online coordinations of CF campaign.

Session might include:

  • CF platform overview: which fits what&why. (the focus of the session is on practical stuff, so we can make some sort of really short overview or skip it and focus on the prod) Our preliminary platform of choice is goteo, on which @petros_at_freelab has this.

  • Formulating a message short and clear enough to fit CF format. Or sketch it at least for further reformulations.

  • Production: vids&pix. (this is the most important part of the session as it is way much easier to do in RL during the LOTE3 than online) There is a session dedicated to LOTE video production proposed by @sammuirhead.

  • Communication: while preparing and running CF campaign, mapping stakeholders.

  • Budgeting (based on previous LOTEs)

  • Googlehangout with those who can help with their expertise, but not physically present at LOTE (provided they have time and we have enough internet for that)

  • Play around with the crowdfunding template.

  • Watch a crowfunded movie? Some time in the evening before the CF session (also as relaxation/brain-hygiene activity)

Whats needed/would be great to have:

  • people who would like to join: share insights&CF prod skills (optional) or just participate in any other ways.

  • I would like to borrow some recording devices. I’ll bring what I have, but it will be great to have some extra things.


Who has experience with crowdfunding already?

With the wide variety of backgrounds amongst ERs and the difficulty of accessing money in a traditional way, I’m sure that a number of us have had some experience on crowdfunding campaigns and learned a great deal in the process. I did a huge amount of research before my first campaign and still was very unprepared for the actual experience. How about if those of use who have some experience (no need to be an expert!) each present a very short (~5min) little run-down of what they learned, what caught them by surprise and what they woud do differently next time.

Another important preparatory step would be finding example campaigns by similar organisations, with similar goals or similar target audiences, and examining/comparing them to see if we can learn from their experience. This discussion can take place online of course.

Here’s who

As far as I know, people with experience of this in the community are [Justyna Krol] and [Petros at FreeLab].

need advice

@alberto, do you know by chance whom of Matera inhabitants have been doing CF/interested in CF, so I can ask them if they would like to join? I suppose, I can do it on the MT2019 platform, but I’m a bit shy to post there in Eng or googletranslatish.

no need to be, theyd be happy that you took time to post!

Introduce yourself and the session at lote with a link. And invite whomever is interested to join. I posted in English and no one minded, quite the opposite. Just do it!

Should we think of selling point for people who dont attend Lote

My reaction when I read about this session: why would people support an event hundreds would attend if it’s not their own network or event? Would we be targeting mostly people who would come to the event, hence support it? basically our #nospectators approach so far, but with an additional outreach instrument, and possibility to raise money.

but if we’re not only addressing Edgeryders, how would we talk people into supporting it? Yes, we can argue that Lote is awesome and the encounters there will be lifechanging, but to make outsiders, drop by-ers donate we might be needing something stronger, “cuantifiable” in terms of outputs: handbooks and guides to making great projects happen, that everyone could use? or is there an additional selling point? can anyone try to summarize it?

Like Sam, I think a good documentation work prior to the session is collecting similar campaigns and check their outcomes.

@k11 : In addition to the points you listed, I would add to the wiki

  • budgeting Lote based on our experience organising it so far: Lote1 had money on the table, Lote2 and Lote3 didn't, so we'd need to do some maths there too.
  • the task of outlining list of stakeholders, depending on their proximity to the project - core people involved (maybe you, Justyna and whoever else wants to run this), direct stakeholders (the community and friends who would be willing to make a (non)monetary pledge), and indirect stakeholders (everyone who is up for supporting and promoting the campaign by reaching out to their network base).
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Also looking at it from the other point of view

Unrelated to this discussion, I asked my Facebook connections for Suggestions for good ways of dealing with the rising number of requests to engage with crowdfunding campaigns and other attempts to capitalise on social relationships. And then I realised it’s totally relevant to this conversation, as well as that it would be helpful to have access to a number of examples of successfull and failed crowdfunding campaigns and how they were built…

A: I don’t think there’s anything wrong with crowdfunding. Some people have inspiration and are expected to share it with friends. Others have money, why shouldn’t they be expected to share?

B: I think that over time social norms will develop to tell us when it is ok to try to get someone involved in crowdfunding and when it is not. As every other social interaction it takes times for the norms to become clear

C: so, lets discuss, Mattias. when do you think it is ok, when is it not ok?

B: I don’t know. I hope smarter people will figure that out for me. And I am eagerly awaiting their results

C: i meant on a personal basis. when do you get annoyed or when do you get excited about a crowdfunding?

B: I never get annoyed when people send me links about it. I get annoyed if they ask me to commit directly. I get excited when other people than the ones asking for the crowd funding are the ones pushing for it.

B:i quite agree with you.

E: Do you mean that you feel “forced” to donate because it’s a request from a friend albeit indirect? Then I would say - donate if it’s something you feel for and want to donate towards. If not, don’t. You shouldn’t feel guilty for not donating.

F:  I feel there are also different kinds of crowdfunding. Some resemble more “Group Buying” ( Group buying - Wikipedia ) , and some others tend to resemble more a charitable gift in support of a project. - I also have the feeling that depending on ones context, the feeling can be different. I know I started feeling much more at ease about the prospect of asking for money in Switzerland ( even if I did not ), feeling that money was not a problem for people around me ( during the short time I spent there ). Yet as most of the people I hang out with have no money, or very little, and as we all seem to be engaged voluntarily some way or another, it can feel annoying to see others ask me for money for things I do without being paid, or for which I do not get my expenses covered for.

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Thanks for a quick feedback.

@sammuirhead are you up to doing one of those 5 min experience sharing? It will be great. I don’t want the CF session to entirely piggyback on the video prod session you’ve proposed, as it has a different purpose, what do you think about scheduling them two in a way that your videoprod insights can be used in a CF session too?

Also, the sharing sucess/fail experience made me think of may be a few supershort video or audio interviews with people I know who will not be at LOTE. I’ll have a look.

@alberto Thanks, I’ll ping Petros. Justyna is one with whom I’ve started CF conversation at the first place, so I’m just boiling down her thoughts.

I have same questions when I think of CF.

I’m not sure yet how to clearly and very shortly formulate that funding LOTE (apart from a short single event there is a process which fuels projects, and a real life LOTE event is a tip on an iceberg. At the same, thinking in this direction shifts the focus to funding Edgeryders rather than LOTE. Conceptualising and formulating a CF4LOTE campaign to me looks tricky. Hope RL session and the online prep will help to answer some of these.

@nadia Wow, I haven’t thought of moral implications of CF. It is like opening a can of philosophy.

A very well executed crowdfunding campaign

They got 2,000 dollars in the last two hours. The campaign launched today and they already exced 3,000.

I think it is very well explained and witty (well, it helps that I find the product relevant). Notice how edgeryder [Smari] is on the team.

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This one on goteo was for crowdfunding an event:

I want to interview few CF campaigners to get some short insights on their experience in video/sound format. Set up a bambuser video channel for it. Let me now if you have any suggestions on whom to interview, what to ask, and if you think it’s a good idea at the first place.

Quick thoughts on CF

I’ve started asking CF-experienced people to share their thoughts. That’s what Nicolas Alcala ( “The Cosmonaut”) said .

4486 from Cosmonaut Blya Savitskaya on Vimeo.

Few other people independently hightlighted the importance of people behind the project. Though, it is a usual tip from most of the platforms, personal message is, apparently, even more important than stressed on the platforms.

Those were ones working with transmedia and filmmaking - so the importance of The Universe of the project has been stressed several times. I got contaminated with this concept of universe as something people can relate to and, to a certain extent, experience even those who have never seen an edgeryder life.

This led me to some thoughts regarding of the proposed CF session:

  • Focus on storytelling and creation of ER universe that people can relate to might be more important than thinking of a CF campaign as such. So I see the CF session transforming into the story&universe of ER making session.

  • Though, this doesn’t necessarily mean that it will become something philosophical. Video-documenting is the key.

  • Might need storytelling help from materani: someone from the local area sharing thoughts&first fresh impressions of LOTE&ERs. How do seek help from Materani?

  • Made me think of @jasmine_idun, I’m not sure what she’s up to right now, but I remember her being storytelling-smarter than I am. I’ll ping her.

Just came across a friend’s post on crowdfunding strategy

Max Valentin’s company Fabel has built a match and crwdfunding site. He has a post on choice of crowdfunding strategy here.  Hope it helps! platform is quite an interesting model: mix between private&public money. If we try to crowdfund or crowdco-fund LOTE4 to take place in Sweden, we can give it a try.

I have been thinking a lot of this “crowdfunding the event that you are not a part of” dilemma Noemi has mentionned.

But I feel like thinking, reading and taking notes is no longer extremely enlightning. I think that the reason for that is that I have difficulties to imagine, sitting here, what exactly we are to crowdfund. I know it is LOTE event… but when I been to two previous LOTE I haven’t seriously (and collectively) visualised them in a head as crowdfundable universes. And that’s what I would really like to get from this session.

Inspiring crowdfunders I spoke to, since we proposed this session, had a very strong image in the head of what they are asking money for and why is it important. I don’t think they had doubts about whether it is appropriate to sk for money from everywhere and everyone. Or may be they had, but didn’t tell me when I asked.

I have a hunch that one of the super-powers of ER is some sort of a crowd-imagination. I guess is a second leap towards practical real life realisation of things which are wanted and imagined. Oh, I’m opening some sort of meta-can here. So I stop.

The main reason I’m so eager to connect this session to ones on video documenting and prod, is that I think the video-sound (relatively coherent) representation of what happens at LOTE is the huge part of crowdfunding campaign. It’s more than a promotional video, but rather a LOTE universe. Or see in more concrete terms what do we want from the LOTE4? And crowdfund what we see.

It might turn out that we will come up with a campaign to crowdfund not the next LOTE as such, but something which is connected to it?