Crowdfunding Platform Kickstarter Moving to the Blockchain
Earlier this week Kickstarter announced it has begun working on a decentralized crowdfunding platform of its own utilizing the Celo blockchain.
While the company has not explicitly shared its plans for this platform, many speculate that it will implement a flexible blockchain application for crowdfunding and this speculation is certainly not unfounded. First, decentralization will allow the crowdfunding process to be far more transparent and secure, two pillars which decentralization itself is based upon. Second, this is Kickstarters wheelhouse – since 2009, the company has helped launch more than 200,000 successful projects with over six billion dollars raised across industries and functions
Lastly, in a statement shared on their website, founder Perry Chen and CEO Aziz Hasan announced their “commitment to a more open, collaborative, and decentralized future”. Teasing the upcoming platform, the statement went on to reveal that they are developing “an open-source protocol that will essentially create a decentralized version of Kickstarter’s core functionality. This will live on a public blockchain, and be available for collaborators, independent contributors, and even Kickstarter competitors, from all over the world to build upon, connect to, or use”.
Speaking on why they chose Celo as opposed to other blockchains, Chen and Hasan noted the ease of the blockchain’s composability, its efficient participation in governance, a carbon-negative footprint, and the ecosystem’s thoughtful approach to building technology which they find particularly attractive. It also helps that Celo has roots in the same sector – their global payments infrastructure blockchain greatly simplifies access to global financial services, particularly geared to mobile users.
Another possible implementation that could arise from this shift towards a blockchain could be a digital token native to Kickstarter that would then be used to fund projects. The company did not confirm nor deny this in their statement and promised to release a white paper outlining the technology and plans for the protocol over the coming weeks. Should this token come to fruition, it would prove the most widely shared idea in cryptocurrency: everything with value can be tokenized. And since we have already started seeing the tokenization of everything ranging from real estate to sports moments to art, the tokenization of crowdfunding is not out of the question.
The statement closed off by saying, “In the coming years, we believe large swaths of the internet will be reconstructed from the ground up by open and decentralized networks of contributors, who participate in the design, operation, governance and even ownership of the technology themselves”.
Interestingly enough, Kickstarter’s existing DNA has significant overlap with that of blockchain as given its reliance on staking and crowd participation. This should result in a unique product that is bound to revolutionize the process of crowdfunding.
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