12 MAR 2015 :: Politics :: Crowd-funding

I am catching up again...  Not really sure what to comment on about our politics in America... or anywhere else.  I am still trying to organize and update and find income to hire helpers for my BIG goals in life...  

I have a fiverr.com account, actually two of them -- one for me, one for WT.  I had a tip gig on my personal account (it was all by itself for a short while), but looking at it every time I checked my account made me think of crowd-funding. I wondered if someone could raise money with a tip gig... and that it would be like crowd-funding. 

I discovered that other sellers on fiverr have "donate" gigs now.  I'm not sure how that works.  My tip gig was created when I had a regular gig available for purchasing.

In time I went ahead and made some social media posts about it...on Twitter and Facebook.  I didn't seem to get any response, according to the fiverr stats.  Of course, posting in the middle of the night might be part of the reason.  :-)   I still want to see what might happen with a tip gig...partly because fiverr has been a difficult place to try to earn money but I like the $5 gig concept...so keep watching for a renewed effort.  :-)    You can contribute to the cause, too.

Ever since crowd-funding began, I have been trying to find a way to fund Working Together with it.  Not having start-up capital, not being eligible for traditional financing, and not being able to raise income through my sales efforts, had been a long problem.  Crowd-funding was an ideal fundraising option for me, but I haven't yet been able to get all the requirements figured out.

After WT is established, I hope to set up smaller funding efforts for those we would care for that could not work and didn't have any personal income sources...like homeless people, like seniors, like disabled people.  I have been considering a lot of ways to create that program.

In watching financial programs on OPB (a PBS station), I think it was The Truth About Money, I learned the word for new industries that displace current industries is "disruptors."  Robotics, solar energy, and other technologies are examples of disruptors we are dealing with.  I think crowd-funding is a disruptor also, because it replaces a large part of the banking system, the fundraising structure, and the resource access options.  I'm not sure how much it affects these industries, but it does affect them. It has changed them forever.  Even the government tax system was changed to accommodate the income created by crowd-funding efforts.

Crowd-funding is a unique opportunity for the public to be directly involved in providing resources for people and projects they would never know about otherwise.  Now crowd-funding is reaching into the investment spheres... which will change the idea of sharing to what can I make for myself with this financial help. 

As a low-income person, crowd-funding means the financial help I would receive is not a debt -- it doesn't have to be paid back, it isn't a personal or business liability that is hanging over every decision you make.

Crowd-funding also allows less honorable people to commit fraud.  This changes sharing into a fear of being involved.  I tried to find out about oversight of funds collected for one community outreach effort.  I discovered there wasn't any.  This will be changed as time goes by and more fraud is detected.  Crowd-funding platforms will have to provide some kind of accountability... like verifying the need, the project, the cause being collected for, and how the money is spent.  If someone gives to pay medical bills, the money needs to be spent on medical bills.

As a Christian, and because I naturally want to make myself and Working Together accountable for the funds that it might collect as donations, I want to set up some kind of financial reporting process.  I have always felt it would be critical to the reason I want to collect funds.  My challenge is how to protect individual privacy, and avoid misuse of the information.

Privacy, accountability, fraud, abuse, and other important considerations mean crowd-funding will become another politically regulated activity.  It seems like everything becomes a political issue.  How much oversight is necessary to protect the public?  If we self-regulate, will it change the need for government oversight?  I don't know...people don't seem to do what is right on their own.