Think about all the worthy causes and great innovations that aren’t funded just because the idea doesn’t happen to occur to someone with deep enough pockets. Crowdfunding sites like Kickstarter make financially unattainable ideas suddenly possible, through the help of generous strangers who can securely donate a lot or a little to the campaigns that most interest them.
Kickstarter.com‘s homepage features both staff-picked and local campaigns.
I don’t particularly care to contribute to a documentary about hippos (far right), but I dug further into the Birmingham campaigns to see if there were any causes I’d like to donate to. In the Birmingham category, only seven campaigns are currently open, with one already more than fully funded. None of these projects — poetry workshop, exercise invention, mobile juicery, cat watercolors, pin-up photography, the hippo documentary and a board game (which was the fully funded one) — made me want to contribute money.
On the full page of Birmingham results, many — probably even most — of the closed campaigns were music related. I’m fully aware of how old this makes me sound, but I don’t know a whole lot about Birmingham’s local music scene. (I used to be cool, honest.) So I wouldn’t be interested in donating to bands with which I am unfamiliar. And being a grad student with a full-time job (as many of my classmates are), I don’t have a whole lot of extra time to sink into shows. I do, however, think it’s awesome that these budding artists have a platform that allows them to appeal to their fans; maybe they can only contribute a few dollars each, but those dollars add up in a crowdfunding situation. Judging by the number of successful Birmingham music campaigns, it works.
Moving on. Next, I decided to explore by category rather than location to see if I could find a cause I’d like to contribute to.
I browsed the design category, and LOOK AT WHAT I FOUND:
It’s the K-pod — a converter that makes “any coffee maker into a K-Cup brewer.”
Genius. Because guess what happens when your Keurig breaks? You’re stuck with tons of K-Cups, as well as a sour taste in your mouth for Keurigs, which is why you don’t just buy another. That’s a true story. I love my Kitchen Aid coffee maker, and many times I do want to brew a whole pot of coffee. But sometimes, I just want one cup.
Now: Coffee lovers, unite! We must make this K-pod thing happen. Go forth and crowdfund!