One of the most interesting social network models to develop of late are artist funding websites.
Artist funding websites work like this: Artists sign up and pitch their projects to the public via the website.
Users go on the website, browse through different projects and if they find something interesting, they sign up and donate money to the project until it meets its budget or the project deadline expires.
Here is a review of the artist funding websites that i know of (disclaimer, i’ve backed up one project in kickstarter, but i am in no way associated with them):
-Professionally built interface
-Great project search options, projects are ranked
-Many different artists and music categories
-Offers music previews
-Projects only limited to music artists
-Insane fixed budgeting ($50k to record and distribute an album??)
-No project expiration dates
-Greedy artists (i.e. example: artist “Second person” is trying to raise $100k to record an electronica album!!)
-Website is very crowded with artists searching for money, decreases the chances of being funded
-Site offers little hope for a true indie artist that is not pushing cheesy commercial music to get funded.
-Projects open to all types of artists, etc
-Funding handled through a trusted third party: amazon.com.
-Donations go back to the funders if they project doesn’t meet its budget by the deadline.
-Good and active forum
-Good project selection
-Indie project friendly
-Humble, realistic Budgets
-Still in beta (project pitching is not public and the process to submit projects to beta seems to be clouded in obscurity)
-No clear vision of what features to add to the website, or how to handle a possible onslaught of artists pitching project once the website goes “live”
Features some well known artists. (such as Linda Thompson, and NPR featured artist Alex Alvear)
-Funding handled through two trusted third parties: Google Checkout or Pay Pal’s secure website.
-Bad name (thehector fund sounds more like a financial website)
-No forum, no sense of community
-Clunky blog interface built on a wordpress theme that is no appropiate.
-Has only three artists / projects
-Insane budgets (Linda Thomson wants $50k to record an album!!.. one album!, Alex Alvear wants $10k)
-No future plans of website improvement or community building.
-No monetary refund if the project doesn’t meet its project budget
-No project deadline or expiration
-Projects are carefully “selected”.. so project submission is basically closed to the public
-Anywhere from 10% to 30% of the each total budget goes to the website (!!) (30% for setting & hosting a wordpress blog? pfff..GTFOH!)
Somewhere Aphex Twin is laughing at all these recording budgets