Monday, September 19, 2016

Crowdfunding and Creatives

This Friday, I will co-present on a continuing legal education panel on "The New Crowdfunding Laws for Private Investors & Other Ways to Legally Raise Money For Your Project" at the Americanafest--the Americana Music Festival and Conference.   The program description is set forth below.

There have been significant changes in federal and state laws related to soliciting investors through crowdfunding and other types of investment activities.  These new changes are designed to make certain types of investments easier and more accessible to people and businesses who seek investors for their projects. This panel will discuss those new laws and strategies of how to seek small to moderate size investments under today’s federal and state law. The panel will also discuss “dos” and “don’ts” for those seeking out investors and what to look for when offered an investment opportunity.

I love cultivating this ground, even if I have done much of it in the past with different audiences.  I will prepare some specialized information relating to financing music and other creative projects, for example, for this program.  I also plan to discuss important traps for the unwary.

What I really want to know is: what else might folks working with and in the music industry (or with other artistic and creative business venturers) want to know?  I have some ideas based on my research on crowdfunding to date.  But send me your ideas . . . .  No doubt, a whole new discussion may be generated from audience questions.  But I would love to be as prepared as possible.

Conferences, Crowdfunding, Joan Heminway | Permalink


I teach a lot of artists and creative types at Belmont, and one of the things that many seem concerned with is maintaining their "artistic integrity." Given this, you may want to talk about how equity/securities crowdfunding might impact artistic decisions (more so, I think, than a rewards based system where the backers aren't usually financially involved long-term).

Posted by: Haskell Murray | Sep 20, 2016 5:24:59 AM

Nice insight, Haskell. Just fyi, a Facebook response to this post also mentioned, among other things, thinking about crowdfunding beyond fan funding--incorporating existing industry players (e.g., music labels and executives) in the crowdfunding of music and other creative enterprises.

Posted by: joanheminway | Sep 20, 2016 7:20:17 AM

My experience with crowdfunding as an artist tells me that I didn't understand, and I think this is true of others, how much raising even tiny amounts of money from other people changes your relationship with them. If you are a responsible person, it creates a sense of indebtedness that you will carry around until the funded project is finished. I think that the current atmosphere of crowdfunding for artists has a lot of excitement and hoopla in it without creating clarity about how this will change the artist's relationships. That said, in my case it also gave me the extra push I needed to finish my project. Years of looking my friends in the eyes and experiencing the sometimes unspoken question, "when are you going to get your project done?" created, for me, a sense of quiet pain that drove me even more into completion of my project than I would have been in the absence of these relationships.

Posted by: Sanford Lewis | Oct 6, 2016 6:05:58 AM

The sense of responsibility/obligation that you experienced, Sanford is something I also have heard about from others. Thanks for sharing this and also for noting the value of crowdfunding for your project, nevertheless.

Posted by: joanheminway | Oct 7, 2016 10:38:37 PM

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