Koko: Crowds Fund Science Directly…

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Koko the Reflexive

Scientists Turn to Crowds on the Web to Finance Their Projects

By

New York Times, July 11, 2011

In January, a time when many scientists concentrate on grant proposals, Jennifer D. Calkins and Jennifer M. Gee, both biologists, were busy designing quail T-shirts and trading cards. The T-shirts went for $12 each and the trading cards for $15 in a fund-raising effort resembling an online bake sale.

The $4,873 they raised, mostly from small donations, will pay their travel, food, lab and equipment expenses to study the elegant quail this fall in Mexico.

. . . . . . .

In the crowd funding genus, MyProjects is a different species from Kickstarter. All projects on the site have been vetted by scientists and already receive financing from Cancer Research UK. And the funds are guaranteed regardless of whether the MyProjects goal is reached. Mr. Bromley calls it “substitutional funding.”

. . . . . . .

The quail project was one of thousands that Cassie Marketos, a community editor at Kickstarter, has approved. “It’s one thing to buy a book about quails,” she said. “But to know that you played a small part in making it happen is a much different experience.”

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Phi Beta Iota:  The world is in an intermediary stage toward governing without government.  The era of outrageous fraud, waste, and abuse–massive investments by the government of tax-payer funds on the basis of ideology or special interests, not intelligence with integrity–is coming to an end.  Participatory democracy, alternative localized or specialized currencies that cannot be taxed, and intelligence-driven self-governance that is open to all stakeholders (Panarchy), are all emergent.