New interest; crowdfunding

I have just discovered crowdfunding and I am exploring the options and possibilities of it right now. There are so many projects I have wanted to do for a long time, but funding, or the lack of it, always stops me.

What is crowdfunding? Well the basic idea is that individuals donate small amounts of money to a project via Paypal or direct transfer. It’s an offshoot of the social media craze. The specifics, as I understand them so far, are that a website hosts the project (there are heaps of them, a google search will reveal them all) and people use social media to advertise their project and gain sponsors, people donate using Paypal or bank transfer.
The basic question is always ‘Who makes money out of this?’ Well, the hosting site and Paypal both get a small percentage from each donation, and the people who are seeking the funding get the majority of the funds. I am very excited by the possibilities of this method of fund raising, especially for small personal projects and things outside the norm.

The biggest success for crowdfunding in the media of late is the Climate Council’s raising of enough funds to continue operation despite losing government backing and the silliest has to be the case of the man who raised $37000 to make potato salad.

 Having read these media reports and thought about it for a few days…I decided to launch my own campaign. My reasoning is this…we pay 52% of our total family income to a bank in order to (eventually) own the block of land on which our humpy stands, if we can crowdfund enough money to pay off this debt (and avoid all that interest payment) we can spend a proportion of that money onwards to other people’s projects. I see it as a way to break the hold of the banks on our purchasing choices, try getting a loan for a rural property with a small deposit some time.

The link to my campaign is;

As part of my ‘putting my money where my mouth is’ policy, I have decided to fund one project every week for $5 while I can afford it. I will post the project I choose on my personal Facebook page and also on this blog.

This week I chose;

Everyone knows I have a soft spot for animals.

I would love to hear views on this new interest; is crowdfunding a valid way to raise funds, or is it just begging?
Do you have a crowdfund project on the go? Send me the details and I may donate.
Can crowdfunding change the way we use money?
What do you think?

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