Micropatronage

Buy me a boob job

I swear that's how this all started. Years ago, I remember some woman looking to raise enough money to get breast implants. Completely unnecessary but lo and behold, she managed to raise the money. And countless others have done the same since. The idea, of course, spread to many people asking for whatever they could (and I'm sure many of the lame-ass requests barely got past $5).

I've twice considered going the micropatronage or fundraising route.

The first was back when trying to build GainCMS. Similar to what TextDrive had done, I figured all I needed was 100 people to pay $250 and I'd be set for a few months to focus on developing the product. I'd offer free hosting or free licenses for anybody who'd contribute. Alas, I don't think I was anywhere near serious enough to actually go ahead with it. It was just something I thought about. It seemed like the easy way out.

The second time was with the adoption. As many who have gone through the adoption process before will know, it can be an expensive journey. Paperwork, lawyers, and travel costs all add up and quickly. Our first adoption cost around $25,000. With the next adoption underway, I pondered whether the financial cost could be lessened by reaching out and asking the community for financial help. This time I came closer; I even asked some people whether they thought it was a good idea or not. They all said it was but I passed on the idea anyways.

So it is with interest and envy to see others jump into the micropatronage ring.

The latest is the outspoken Joe Clark who has set up a micropatronage site to help his efforts. What I find interesting is that you're not funding his research but rather funding his fundraising efforts. In other words, he's hoping to raise $7,777 with which he'll live off of for four months to try and raise $7 million needed to fund his Open and Closed Project project for the long term. The goal of the project "is to write a set of standards for the four fields of accessible media – captioning, audio description, subtitling, and dubbing. We’ll develop those standards through research and evidence-gathering."

Joe finds me patronizing!

It's projects like these that I feel are worthy of contribution as the ideas are well thought out and have a larger impact than just on oneself.

Published November 09, 2006
Categorized as Opinion
Short URL: https://snook.ca/s/716

Conversation

7 Comments · RSS feed
Ryan Brooks said on November 08, 2006

Obviously you've not heard of http://www.robinhoodfund.com/ - the latest project of my former employer, Cambrian House.

I dunno, I think that micro-patronage is a very cool concept... If done well...

Jonathan Snook said on November 09, 2006

It is a cool concept. Very socialist, really. It's just that I always felt a little tawdry ever trying to do it myself; I wasn't worthy of it. It was hard enough for me to add the Paypal button on the page (not that anyone has actually taken me up on the offer).

Steve said on November 09, 2006

Has anyone checked out Joe's book? Just wondering if its a good resource on accessibility.

mark said on November 14, 2006

Steve: Haven't read Joe's book yet, but I hope to do so soon :)

Sean said on November 21, 2006

Have you seen the site MyFreeImplants!? It's taken the whole "Buy me a boob job" thing to the next level and essentially wrapped it into a social networking site! Brilliant and disturbing, all in one site.

Gunnar said on December 15, 2006

@ Ryan Brooks:

Be careful with Robinhoodfund.com!
I think it's a scam. Upon reading this i checked out their site and decided to place a wish. Well, my wish won and that was a month ago now. Since then i tried multiple times to reach via phone or e-mail without even the slightest bit of success.

So.... be careful -> Robinhoodfund.com = SCAM

Hagrid said on February 20, 2007

Gunnar, did you ever receive your wish from RobinHoodFund.com, since making this post in mid-December?

I won my wish from RHF last week (for a light box) and received the money via PayPal today.

I'd hate for RHF to be called a scam if they are actually paying what they say they are doing.

Though I have heard complaints that they can be a bit ...slow... in doling out the money. I'm hoping that is the case here.

-Hagrid

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