After all the hand-wringing and pearl clutching and doomsdaying about celebrities utilizing Kickstarter, the crowdfunding site is reporting that both the Veronica Mars movie and Zach Braff’s Wish I Was Here helped raise $400,000 for 2,200 other projects. How did they do it? By attracting more people to the site — 63% of their backers had never backed a project before, and many went on to find other worthwhile projects to give money to. The rising tide lifted all boats.
Obviously this doesn’t dismiss other concerns about famous people and corporations mitigating their risk by asking their potential audience to pay what amount to inflated upfront ticket prices. However, this set of numbers is a powerful one that blasts any gut-notion that “blockbuster” projects take away money from the “true indies.” In fact, it’s exactly the opposite. As a for-profit company, these large projects are in Kickstarter’s best interest, but there’s also something amazing going on at that site. Great work is being done, people are finding new art to support and creators are getting the funding they need. If larger-profile appeals like these help everyone, then more power to them.