#131313: Code Black

An experiment in giving

Project Goal


13 Crowdfunding sites

$1,300.00 to give away

#131313 is an experiment in giving. Over the course of 2013, from each paycheck I receive (26 in all), I will give $50 to help fund someone else’s dream. That is 26 projects in all, for a total of $1,300.

This isn’t about giving big: its about showing how even giving a little can help good things happen in this world. I’m not rich, or important, or famous; I’m probably about as average as one can be. What power an individual has to affect good in the world, becomes something else again when we join together, and use it to help those around us. Crowdsourcing has opened a whole new universe for collaborative good. $50 may not seem like much, but 100 people with $50 is a different story. A 1,000 people with $50? Well, now you really have something. World-changing companies have been started with less.

For each project selected, I will share what it was that inspired me to participate. In fact, you’ll have a view over my shoulder to every update I receive on the progress of the project, and any gifts (swag) I receive in return for sponsorship. There is no limit to the type of projects: from start-up ventures to gadget design, film making to musical events, non-profits to research projects; they’re all fair game, so long as something about them inspires belief in their dream, or is intriguing enough to want to see where they can go with it.

This isn’t just about the projects, its also about the explosion of sites across the web allowing people to share their dreams, and invite total strangers to come along for the ride, to participate in making dreams come true. Of course you know the mainstays like Kickstarter and IndieGoGo, and I will certainly source projects from them. But part of this project is to explore some of the lesser-known sites available for crowdsourcing. I will strive to use 13 sites in all, aiming to pull two projects from each (providing of course that suitable inspiration can be found) over the course of the year. For this part, voyeuristic inclinations will be satiated by reading my experiences using the site, the ease (or lack) in finding and learning about projects, making payments and keeping up with progress reports.

Project #131313 won’t end in just 12 months. While the project selection will be done with the 26th, updates will continue until all projects have closed, which I estimate could be as long as 18 to 24 months in total. On those sites that have ‘jeopardy’ attached (meaning, if the project fails to meet its fundraising goal, they get nothing), if a project I’ve selected fails, I have decided that the the promised funding will go into a pool until the end of the year. At that time, this ‘pool of lost dreams’ will be donated to charity, and YOU will help to choose the charity. One way or another, I’ve promised to give away $1,300, and I will.

26 project selection posts, 13 site review posts, and who knows how many updates, photos and commentaries will follow. Maybe one of these will inspire you to give, or to create your own dreams.

This is going to be interesting.


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