Our Next Great Leap

Today I’m announcing that we are beginning the search for Kickstarter’s next CEO.

I’ve spent the last 12 years working on Kickstarter in many different roles. As a co-founder, as our first community support rep when we launched in 2009, as an evangelist sharing Kickstarter with creators, as a team-builder who has hired and supported so many wonderful people, and most recently as CEO.

Kickstarter’s mission is to help bring creative projects to life. As a Public Benefit Corporation, we strive to be a leader in thoughtful corporate governance. We’ve empowered more than 100,000 people to bring their book, album, movie, artwork, game, play, or product into existence. Kickstarter distributed more than $170 million to independent creators over the last three months — the biggest three-month stretch in our history.

Since 2014 when I became CEO, we made several great leaps: tripling the total dollars pledged to projects, launching Kickstarter to creators in 16 countries, and building an exceptional team of leaders at every level. Now we’re looking for someone who can push us to make our next great leaps.

Let me be the first to tell you: the job is great. The team is seriously ridiculous. 2017 will be our eighth straight profitable year. Great stuff is cooking in the oven. Being the CEO of Kickstarter is an unreal opportunity for someone with a deep connection to creative projects, someone who doesn’t believe in putting profit above all, and someone who’s excited by the challenge of building on a successful business that’s oriented to the long term.

While I’ll step down sometime later this year, I’ll continue to be out in the world sharing our story as a cofounder and #1 fan. And I’ll be getting up to some new projects, too.

I want to thank my cofounders Perry and Charles, our board, and the team for fighting the good fight together. Hell yeah!

Celebrating 100,000 Kickstarter Creators

The Martha Graham Dance Company has run three Kickstarter projects. Photo by Brigid Pierce. Courtesy of Martha Graham Dance Company.
The Martha Graham Dance Company has run three Kickstarter projects. Photo by Brigid Pierce. Courtesy of Martha Graham Dance Company.

We were poking around in our stats and discovered that we recently passed a nice round milestone: More than 100,000 independent creators have funded their projects with Kickstarter.

Those creators come from every corner of the creative universe. They are documentary filmmakers, tabletop game developers, fashion designers, and open-source hardware tinkerers. They come from Provo and Malmo and Tulum. Some ran a single project that raised $100. Some have run dozens of projects. There are individuals like the designer Ji Lee with his Redundant Clock, and important cultural organizations like the Martha Graham Dance Company. Together they paint a picture of the independent creative landscape today.

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40+ Ideas to Inspire Your Project of Earth

How would you explain the diversity of life and culture on Earth to someone — or something — from a far-away planet?

In 1977 Carl Sagan and his team created the Golden Record — a collection of scenes, sounds, music, and greetings representing life on Earth — and launched it into space on NASA’s Voyager 1 and 2 probes. Intended as a message for other intelligent life forms who might encounter these spacecraft and wonder about their origins, the record was also an exercise in self-discovery and reflection.

Four decades later, we’re still inspired by the imagination, optimism, and curiosity that went into creating this terrestrial time capsule. So we’re asking you to contribute to making something that represents life on Earth in 2017 by putting your own imaginative idea out there for others to discover. We know, we know — representing a whole planet is a huge undertaking. That’s why we’re inviting our entire community to take part. Combined, these projects will form a portrait of the Earth today: our accomplishments, challenges, hopes, and dreams, conveyed through a diverse collection of creative projects.

What can you create to represent your little corner of the universe? 

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How L.A. Artist Lauren Halsey Used Kickstarter to Bring Her Public Art Installation to Life


“[South Central L.A.] is a dream world. It’s beautiful. It’s powerful. It’s the most creative place I’ve ever been in the world.” —Visual artist Lauren Halsey

Through art, Lauren Halsey is working to challenge narratives of South Central L.A. Earlier this year, the she launched The Crenshaw District Hieroglyph Project on Kickstarter, a public art installation empowering residents of South Central L.A. to share their own stories. Once constructed, the installation will invite visitors to carve “hieroglyphs” into a series of blank panels, creating a visual archive of the neighborhood. The space will also be used to host community events — from outdoor concerts with local musicians to meetings that facilitate dialogue around the neighborhood’s rapid gentrification.

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Announcing Kickstarter Gold: Bold New Takes on Iconic Projects

Some of the most inventive projects in Kickstarter history are back — with a twist.

3Doodler. Goodnight Stories for Rebel Girls. Music for Cats. Chineasy. These are just a few of the iconic projects whose creators are launching new campaigns today as part of Kickstarter Gold. Now through July 31, a group of over 65 exceptional artists, designers, musicians, and makers will be back on Kickstarter, putting new spins on ideas from their past projects. Whether you’re just discovering their work or you’re a long-time fan, you’ll have the opportunity to support some of Kickstarter’s most inspired creators — and collect exciting rewards that aren’t available anywhere else.

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Our Messaging Tools Just Got Better

More than 27,000 messages a day pass through Kickstarter’s messaging system. That’s a lot to keep up with, especially for active backers and creators. So we’ve rolled out something new on the Kickstarter site: a revamped messaging system that makes it easier to manage the flow.

You’ll notice that your message box has a cleaner look and some new features. A popup menu on the right lets you choose from different views of your messages — including new Spam and Archive options. And you can archive messages from here with one click.

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Launch a Project of Earth: August 20 – September 5

Imagination will often carry us to worlds that never were. But without it we go nowhere. — Carl Sagan

For the fortieth anniversary of the Voyager Golden Record’s launch into space, we invite creators to launch new projects inspired by its scenes, sounds, music, and greetings. Read on for the details, and sign up to receive updates about the initiative.

 

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