richard boase

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An Open Standard, Crowd-Sourced Micro Capital Scheme For ALL Content Creators: "Penny$haring"

The idea is to have a single button which you can press to donate a penny to anything you like online, whether that be a video, article, website etc. The key is in getting it onto platforms in a standard format that everyone knows and trusts.

"Penny$haring" would mean sharing your penny with the creator and the media with a friend.

Users would have to sign up to "Penny$haring" with Go Cardless, Paypal or Google checkout so that they could participate.

Whilst signing up users would have to connect their "Penny$hare" account to Google+, Youtube, Facebook and Twitter, so that a "Penny$haring" button could turn up on those platforms beside each piece of media, just like a 'share' button.

Crowdsourcing buzz/ public conversations would have to drive a movement of creators and sharers to sign up for Penny$haring, but the reward would be to support and 'vote' for the things they really like and find funny, or cool, or important.

This would add value to media, and to media producers, wherever and whoever they are. All we have to do is get the conversation going, and it can become a possibility!

Please use the discussion board to criticise the idea and defend it: what are the problems? Obvious? Obscure? What are it's benefits?

  • Jun 6 2012: I think this is a great idea. It could be used to contribute money to new projects, not yet completed. For example, Rosa Park is trying to organize a TEDx event. This would be a great way to contribute some seed money.

    A penny is extremely tiny. During the signup process, give the contributor the option to increase her standard contribution. Also, permit a left click on this icon to enter a larger contribution. If I want to contribute a dollar, I don't want to click a hundred times. Also, you might want to display how much has been contributed so far. And provide a limit. If a project only needs $10,000 it should shut down at that point, so that contributions can go to other worthy projects.

    Of course lots of people will try to abuse this by describing worthy projects, then pocketing the money. So some kind of standard vetting and auditing process will be required, and that will require a percentage of the contributions too. Still, if this is done on a big scale, the costs could be kept low.
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      Jun 8 2012: Thing is, I like the idea of giving more than a penny, like 10cents or 10p, but I don't like the idea of vetting. I don't like the idea of doing anything other than 'throwing a penny in the hat' - a penny is small enough to not worry about - you could give ten away without noiticing or caring...

      The more complex it gets the worse. Keep it simple I think. Kickstarter and Indiegogo are really the places where this type of thing can happen with campaigns.
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      Jun 8 2012: Also, I think maybe you need to keep a score tab, of how many pennies have been donated, and have a website which logs it, with a 'top ten' type chart. Maybe a 'top 100'
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    Jun 3 2012: One thing I noticed whilst discussing this with someone was the question of how you get people to sign up to and embrace the service. I think people would have to 'want' to do it, actively, and they'd want to be able to see the bigger picture. Ultimately though, if you're creating content, then you are going through an uploading process that is at least as complicated as signing up to a Pennysharing account.

    If content CREATORS sign up to it first so they can swap pennies with other content creators, you might get a community of Pennysharers quickly who support the idea enough for it to go viral. Then that would drive others to sign up for it regardless of whether they're creating content or not.
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    Jun 3 2012: I think you're onto something here, richard. There would be processing costs getting those 'pennies' to the ends desired, but the 'micro funding' scheme would certainly make donating more realistic for more people, therefore driving more philanthropic revenue. Very interesting though. Thnx.