Kickstarter launches Patreon rival Drip

Crowdfunding giant Kickstarter has launched a new service designed to rival the likes of Patreon.

While Kickstarter can be used to crowdfund products and projects with a one-off payment from backers, Drip instead looks to provide creative individuals with an ongoing monthly payment. As the company phrases it: “Kickstarter is for projects, Drip is for people.”

Like Patreon, Drip creators will be able to offer exclusive content and rewards for their supporters. How it hopes to differ from Patreon, however, is in its ability to tap into Kickstarter’s large userbase. It can be quite hard to get a Patreon off the ground, but Drip can theoretically tap into the 13m+ Kickstarter community.

Drip creators will also be able to offers ‘founding membership’ for backers who sign up within the first week or month, a move designed to "replicate the urgency of Kickstarter’s all-or-nothing mechanism".

Drip remains invite-only for the moment, although all signs point to it being opened up to everyone in early 2018. Early creators include Feminist Frequency’s Anita Sarkeesian.

“Today we launch a new Drip for artists and creators across the full spectrum of disciplines we support on Kickstarter. Just as artists, authors, game designers, musicians, and filmmakers use Kickstarter to fund and build community around their projects, Drip is a tool for people to fund and build community around their ongoing creative practice,” the company said.

“In recent years, we’ve seen the growing validation of subscriptions for serial online content creators — podcasters, YouTubers, bloggers — using tools like Flattr, Patreon, and Steady. It’s been great to see organizations build tools like these — the world is far from having too many tools for creators. But there remain large groups of artists and creators who don’t see subscriptions as fitting their creative practices. Our goal with the new Drip is to change that.

“A key mandate for the design of Drip has been creator independence. The work and relationships that creators build online should belong to them. They shouldn’t feel stuck to a platform because those things aren’t easy to move. With that in mind, creators will be able to export their data and content, and we’ll even help creators securely transfer subscription and payments information to other subscription platforms. We believe creator independence means not being locked into a platform by design.”

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