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Posts Tagged ‘99% Invisible’

At $170,000+, ‘99% Invisible’ Becomes Most Funded Kickstarter in Journalism

An update to our post last week: the pledges kept coming, and the most funded journalism project in Kickstarter’s history is now a small-staffed podcast about design.

If you didn’t read it, public radio’s Roman Mars started a crowdfunding campaign this summer with a goal of $42,000 to help fund extra help for its third season of 99% Invisible, his side project focusing on the “invisible” activity that shapes our lives. (It was a necessary gamble– most of the money was slotted to hire former intern Sam Greenspan and make production more manageable.) In the end the radio show distributed by Public Radio Exchange more than hit its goal, and more than doubled its goal, too—the project funded its goal 405 percent.

A total of 5,661 backers crowdfunded it to a whopping $170,477.

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How a ‘Tiny’ Radio Show Raises Over $147,000 on Kickstarter

The crew of the radio show and podcast 99% Invisible doesn’t compare to that of Morning Edition, This American Life, or most popular public radio strongholds. It’s only two people (and even that’s a recent addition.) But with the support of its distributor Public Radio Exchange, and numerous design-curious fans, it may be paving a new model for audio content that fits the purpose of public radio.

With four days to go in its fundraising campaign, the “tiny radio show about design, architecture and the 99 percent invisible activity that shapes our world” has raised over $147,000 through close to 5,000 supporters on Kickstarter, shattering its original goal of only $42,000.

(Notably, the number also already marks it as 1 of only 208 successfully funded projects on Kickstarter to raise over $100,000.)

If funds continue to flow in, the show’s host and producer Roman Mars will be able to do much, including bringing on former intern Sam Greenspan to help produce a strong third season.

This should catch the attention of both content creators and fundraisers. What began as a short one-minute segment on a KALW show is organically growing into a stellar success story of digital storytelling worth examining. So how’d it happen? Read more