Kickstarter is a funding platform for creative projects, and we happily define “creative” broadly. Projects come from the worlds of music, food, journalism, film, comics, fashion, gaming, design, and fine art, among many others. Some are by established artists looking to engage in a new way, others are just creative people with great ideas and supportive networks.
How are projects selected for Kickstarter?
Every project has come in either of two ways: they were invited by an existing member or they sent us their idea. In February we introduced the Starting a Project page where people can easily request an invitation. The response has been overwhelming. We spend hours everyday reading and responding to the ideas that are submitted, and our team has grown as a result. If you wrote into Kickstarter during our first six months you talked to me; from October through April it was Cassie and I; now it’s Cassie, Cindy, and I, with more on the way.
Projects aren’t judged on matters of taste. No one’s being told to ditch the singer or to rewrite the ending. Instead we’re looking for projects that offer rewards rather than begging for help. Projects with a history of effort or a path to completion. Projects that fit our focus on creativity. And don’t worry whether your project is “important” enough. Small, fun projects that a few friends knock out on a Saturday are some of our favorites.
What is and is not right is more art than science. Why is someone starting a homemade cupcake stand a good fit while someone opening a generic pizza place isn’t? They’re both food-related (which we like) and they’re both about starting businesses (which we’re not as crazy about) and yet one fits and the other doesn’t. Viscerally we get the distinction, but defining it is harder. Our guidelines specify some black-and-white rules, but a lot is left to feel.
It’s a very human process. We opened the doors a year ago not knowing where this would go. We couldn’t anticipate every use (or if people would use it at all) but we vowed to evolve with what we learned and to stay committed to what we value most: sincerity, passion, self-awareness, empathy, and great stories. We hope that as you look around Kickstarter, you discover those things too.