Crowd funding sites seem to pop up like skin flakes following a nuclear bombing. Kickstarter is perhaps a well known & major contributor to that particular of current vogues, and perhaps that is why it is in the subject, but serves as a useful kicking example.
Many years ago, in the heady days of 2003 to perhaps 2006, I was very much For crowd funding initiatives. Indeed, I thought crowd funding could provide a sort of evolving democratic mass for art developments. So artists could fund from crowds & in turn the crowds/mass could get Free art experiences + a democratic input.
What I failed to notice at the time was how wedded the whole notion and approach was/is with capitalism and power and its structures and, and many other elements which I will and perhaps later..
So now when people ask me about crowdfunding, or it comes out in a chat, and my face goes a bit wince, there is an inevitable question of why am I against kickstarter and such projects.. Therefore, I’ll begin making a list. However, before that, I’d like to underline that for my mind – perhaps wrongly – the stance am supporting is para-ideological because in some instances I Do suggest for people to use crowd funding, where the When, How & Why seem to justify the activity.
* Numerical exchange is being emphasised over all others.
* Projects/initiatives that might be interesting but their pushers are not well connected, or not that persuasive/communicative, or need to try before something more mature may – or may not – come up, are being sidelined or simply left for dead.
* Quality is squandered to quantity – both of people and of numerical exchange units.
* Ideas are being presented as solutions rather than questions.
* People attempt to convince others of solving rather than questioning – both themselves and project ideas. (..ie there is a sort of solution culture developing..)
* Critique of projects is short on supply and perhaps even demand..
* Crowdfunding follows capitalistic logic of money, power and numbers.
* In Crowdfunding, once large crowds are involved, renders the individual to nearly in significant and, like in other more traditional systems, help make the “deviant” culturally hard to flourish and invisible. (hence the democratic “nature” is questionable.
* The crowdfunding platforms are in a sense sort of advertising boards in themselves. eg, sending an email to all your “friends” calling to come & support a world changing project, is at the same time an advert for the idea and project.
++perhaps more to follow..