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Yancey Strickler, one of the co-founders of Kickstarter, began his working life in journalism in 2000, and managed to make a living as a freelance writer during one of the most difficult times to ply that trade. A few years later, he joined eMusic, where he rose to editor in chief and started an in-house record label to give bands an easier way to get an album out. He began working on Kickstarter long before its April 2009 debut, and remains as excited about its potential to change artists' and creators' lives today as he was before its launch.
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Yancey came to Kickstarter after Perry Chen had conceived of it, and Perry and Charles Adler had started poking at how to make it work. The three of them collectively sign blog entries about policies. Yancey posted early sketches and prototypes on its third anniversary.
Charles and Ray Eames made the remarkable movie Powers of Ten, which uses slow zooms in or out to depict orders of magnitude from 10 to the 26th down to 10 to the negative 18th power. You can watch the whole thing on the site. Yancey cites this 2002 Mark Richardson interview in Pitchfork of David Berman of the band The Silver Jews as influential in setting his life path.
Andy Baio co-created the XOXO festival with Andy McMillan, and was the first chief technology officer for Kickstarter. Andy curated and documented supercuts, making them into a trend; was behind the site Upcoming.org; and created Kind of Bloop.
An early Kickstarter runaway project was Scott Thomas's Designing Obama. I mentioned my friends Don Sellers and Lucy Ostrander's documentary, which recently won a film festival award, Honor & Sacrifice: The Roy Matsumoto Story. Don and Lucy had to convince people who didn't use the Internet to get online and pledge — and they did!
In a blog post in September 2012, the Kickstarter founders capped a year of blockbuster hardware projects with the statement that "Kickstarter Is Not a Store," and set new limits to try to bring backer expectations and creator promises into closer alignment. Kickstarter publishes a continuously updated set of statistics about funds raised, projects underway, and other data.