Can Kickstarter's iTunes Channel Help Crowdfunding Go Mainstream?
Kickstarter is slowly becoming a mainstay of independent filmmaking. Since its launch in 2009, the crowdfunding platform has generated over $1 billion in pledges, funding everything from food to gaming projects, big names in filmmaking, like Spike Lee, Kristen Bell, and Zach Braff, have brought crowdfunding into the mainstream -- somewhat. Kickstarter has created their very own iTunes channel that showcases films financed using the site, giving filmmakers' movies more access to an audience and vice versa, and hopefully giving crowdfunding more mainstream exposure.
It should be said from the get-go, no, Kickstarter's iTunes channel doesn't spotlight all Kickstarter-funded films -- it aggregates Kickstarter-funded films that are already available on iTunes. This might seem like nothing special from the outside, but it's actually kind of exciting, as well as important for independent filmmaking.
Last June, MacRumors reported that the iTunes Store hit 500 million accounts. AppleInsider shared some pretty interesting figures gathered from the NPD Group a month before that: iTunes held a 67% share of the digital TV download market, and a 65% share of the movie market, stating, "No competitor comes close, as Apple outstrips the closest individual services -- Microsoft's Xbox Video and Amazon's Instant Video -- several times over."
Putting the two together creates awareness for film financing using the popularity of iTunes' distribution/exhibition, so your current project, as well as your future projects, could potentially benefit from the jump in the crowdfunding platform's brand recognition.
Sure, a channel on iTunes is going to help crowdfunding go mainstream, but it isn't going to do it all -- the good/bad press celebrity crowdfunding projects have garnered, the $1 billion milestone, the substantial success of Veronica Mars -- brick by brick these things are building a dwelling in which both filmmaker and film-goer can abide to talk about funding movies. So, the answer is yes, but not alone.
If you're curious about which films are on Kickstarter's iTunes channel, you can check out which ones are highlighted here.
How do you think Kickstarter's iTunes channel (and similar efforts) will affect crowdfunding in the months/years to come? Do you think Kickstarter and other crowdfunding platforms could benefit from creating networks like this? Let us know in the comments below.
- Kickstarter's iTunes Channel
- NPD: Apple's iTunes accounts for 67% of TV downloads, 65% of movies -- AppleInsider