Are Startup Websites Being Exploited?

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I remember hearing about Kickstarter for the first time, and thought ‘Wow, what a positive platform to help develop projects for those who can’t get that initial break.’ Lately, it seems the platform has been taking some unexpected turns.

For those who have been waiting for the internet guy to come by your place for the last 2 years and have no idea what I’m talking about, Kickstarter is an online community where creatives receive donations for their startup projects. If you’re a struggling musician who needs recording time, or a juggler who needs a third ball, websites like Kickstarter and Indiegogo can help you raise the money you need to get your project off the ground.

Just recently, Zack Braff, who earned an estimated $350,000 per episode of Scrubs, and who has an estimated net worth of $22,000,000, recently took to Kickstarter to fund a sequel to his emotional teenage cult film ‘Gardern State’. He successfully raised over $3,000,000 dollars to support his project. He claims that he wants to keep Hollywood financer’s hands out of his creative vision. It seems that he would have the means to do this himself, but I guess it’s hard to kiss that kind of money goodbye for a brief amount of time. I guess Braff had a tad bit more social klout than ‘Sabrina the Teenage Witch’ star Melissa Joan Hart, whose attempt at raising a goal of $2,000,000 dollars, ended early after only raising $50,000 dollars. That amount isn’t enough to even get a sit down with Salem the Cat.

Being a Toronto agency, the only thing on the minds of us is the ‘Crackstarter’ campaign started by Gawker to raise $200,000 dollars to buy a video of our mayor Rob Ford smoking crack with drug dealers on a similar website called Indiegogo. Some call it extortion, and others are donating $10,000 dollars to the cause to get their hands on the cell phone the video was shot on. Either way, I’m sure the creators of this platform didn’t have Hollywood movies stars and paying off criminals as examples of possible users in their original business plan.

What do you think about these startup sites? Have these sites been tainted by these recent high profile users?

  • taylorjonez

    Great write up! I’ve started to wonder the exact same thing. Soon enough we’ll be Kickstarting a new world war or something bizarre!

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