The Kickstarter Blog

2011: The Stats

  1. 2011: The Moments

    We reviewed everything that happened in the Kickstarter universe last year and we narrowed it down to 83 stand-out events. Take a deep breath, and let's dig in!

    Winter

    Five Kickstarter-funded films premiere at Sundance. Pop-up restaurant What Happens When opens to raves. A Vivian Maier exhibit breaks attendance records. Daniel Johnston makes a comic and Putty Hill premieres to enthusiastic reviewsProtei takes on the oil spill. Sundance, Pitchfork, and RISD launch Curated Pages. A designer turns the New York Times paywall into a project. Frank Chimero launches the notecard video memeTrade School hosts classes at the Whitney Museum. The Glif Guys explain DIY manufacturing and launch a game theory experiment. Jon Heder starts a project and a Minecraft doc gets huge. Sub-categories go live. The last space shuttle gets documented.

    Spring

    Kickstarter turns two and announces $50 million in pledges; Russia sends an unforgettable birthday card. Matthew Modine launches a project from our office, Ai Weiwei director Alison Klayman appears on Colbert, the TikTok hits the Apple Store, and Kickstarter makes CNN. A photographer commemorates Chernobyl’s 25-year anniversary while technologists try to save Japan. Coffee Joulies save a factory. Freakers USA unveils a project vid for the ages. The Duplass brothers fund Kevin and Black RockGirl Walk gets escorted out of Yankee Stadium. The max project length is shortened to 60 days. Cards Against Humanity is the #1 selling game on Amazon. Robert Gupta plays a 300-year-old Stradivarius violinTom Hanks tweets about son Colin's project. Kickstarters learn to lucid dream and the +Pool becomes the talk of New York. The Eephus resurrects the baseball scorebook for Opening Day.

    Summer

    The New York Times names Kickstarter "the people’s NEA." Funny or Die shares Obama’s Kickstarter to Solve the Debt. The second Kickstarter Film Festival screens on a rooftop. Citizen becomes the 10,000th successful projectEyeWriter and Hip-Hop Word Count are shown in the Museum of Modern Art. James Franco talks about his non-visible art project on Jimmy KimmelIra Glass arm-wrestles at the Eugene Mirman Comedy FestivalTime names Kickstarter one of the 50 Best Websites of 2011. The PadPivot lands in Best Buy. The project pie chart debuts. The Tiny New Yorker melts our hearts. Hundreds strip for Spencer Tunick's Naked SeaUrbanized premieres at TorontoNational Geographic hunts for a lost Da Vinci. Molly Crabapple survives a week in hell. Kickstarter invades Comic Con NYC and a comic anthology raises $100,000. We catch a first glimpse of Rabbit Island. The most meta project ever successfully ends unsuccessfully.

    Fall

    Kickstarter announces one million backers and $100 million in pledges. Fourteen Kickstarter-funded films are accepted to SundancePariah opens in theaters. Cthulhu sells 100,000 copies. The Occupy Wall Street Journal hits the streets. The Coffee Joulies guys chill at the White House. Cleveland gets a Harvey Pekar statue. Swoon’s musical house gets a New York Times raveOur Nixon directs a New York Times op-ed, and PBS profiles SafecastHal Hartley launches a feature, Spock launches a short, Denis Leary launches a doc, and Winger launches a ballet. Kickstarter alums Allison Weiss and Scott Wilson do it again. The DOT hits the Apple Store, Kickstarter rewards hit Times Square, and Amanda Palmer and Neil Gaiman go on tourThe Jay Demerit Story premieres in theaters and The Classical publishes its first piece. Printrbot becomes the second-most funded project ever. The creator dashboard and project preview launch. A thousand people dance to Girl Walk // All DayPitchfork names Marissa Nadler one of the best albums of the year and Spin names Indie Cred Test one of the best books. Kickstarter makes its primetime debut.

    What were your favorite moments of 2011? Please share in the comments!

    19 comments
  2. 2011: The Videos

    More than 30,000 videos were added to Kickstarter in 2011 and we happily watched every single one of them. We have hundreds of favorites, but these twelve we just had to share.

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    A boy and his runaway robot. Gabe Diani and Etta Devine's satire elevates the pitch video to an art form in this clip worthy of Twain himself.

    A ferry tale. Outrageously catchy and impossible not to love, the video for dance film Girl Walk // All Day oozes joie de vivre. We challenge you to watch without getting up to dance.

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    A clock for all seasons. We admit it: Scott Thrift's awe-inspiring video for the Present gets us a little teary-eyed — and not just at the time-lapse shots of the Kickstarter build process.

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    Gill Webb, we salute you. Bruce and Kelly's appearance on the Gill Webb Show is like a mix of Between Two Ferns and Hee Haw. It's extremely funny, and the music is beautiful too.

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    Giving Pixar a run for the money. Mauricio Baiocchi's mastery of miniature puppetry is magical and dreamlike.

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    Are those new shoes?  If we tried to explain the Freakers video you wouldn't believe us. Just watch. 

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    Gotta have that Funklet! Jack Stratton's got style and charm to spare, and he can turn the seat of a golf cart into a snare drum like it's nobody's business.

    How things get made. Dan Provost and Tom Gerhardt share a poignant tour of the manufacturing process for the Cosmonaut. More kids' shows like this, please.

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    We probably shouldn't, but... After two years and thousands of videos, we finally make one of our own.

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    Is that Morgan Freeman? This epic pitch vid is less "pitch" and more "science fictional outer space voyage." Who wins in the battle between the Spirit of Rock 'n' Roll and the Buzz Kills? You'll have to watch to find out. 

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    Watch your back, Glee. If you're looking for adorable, look no further than the video for Synchronized Speaking gold medalists the Pigpen Theatre Company. Aww!

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    Bowled over. The only thing better than Griffin Van Meter's Western bow tie is being able to type "Griffin Van Meter's Western bow tie." Love.

    What was your favorite video of 2011? Please share in the comments!

    22 comments
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