At last, it seems there’s something our divided government leaders can agree to and work together on. This Thursday (April 5, 2012) President Obama signed new legislation aimed at simplifying the process of raising investment capital for small businesses (less than $1 million in revenues/year). It’s encouraging to see our government take positive, bi-partisan steps to support grass-roots innovation. It’s even more encouraging to see that this legislation is fueled by an idea (“Crowdsourcing”) invented by the innovation community itself; the Kickstarter phenomenon is a prime example.
How many of us have had a really great idea, but have had no clue how to take the steps required to raise the funds to get the new idea off the ground? Crowdsourcing was invented to solve this problem. At it’s heart, Crowdsourcing provides a simple, self-organizing method for a great idea to get funded. As a great example, check out the Printrbot success story. Within a short period of time, this inventor with a great idea (simple, affordable, build-it-yourself-if-you-want-to-or-buy-it-if-you-don’t, 3D printing) has raised over $800,000 – directly from people who want exactly that. As has happened many times in other industries, the “middle-man” has been removed and everyone wins because of it. Check out Kickstarter – you may just find the incentive to get your own favorite idea off of the ground…..