Kickstarter has been around for a couple years, but I really took notice when some folks used it to fund a statue for Robocop in Detroit. How awesome is that? Almost as cool as this scene from the movie. Kickstarter offers people with ideas for documentary films, inventions, albums, you name it, a chance to get funding from online supporters. In Philadelphia, a documentary about the mysterious Toynbee Tiles funded through Kickstarter recently won acclaim at the prestigious Sundance Film Festival. Others are more modest, but no less worthy, such as this one for a youth beekeeping project in West Philadelphia. You can search for interesting projects in your city, such Philly, where I am. Here’s a Philly guy who wants to start a line of products for dogs. Now, what do you get for giving money to someone else’s great idea? They typically offer something in return depending on the dollar amount you pledge. One woman who takes artistic photos of herself nude in abandoned buildings is offering exclusive prints for Kickstarter backers. Got an idea that needs funding? Kickstarter is worth a visit.
On Jan. 13, I noticed that #ImFromPhilly was a worldwide trending topic (TT) on Twitter that evening. Huh?
The most retweeted (by 100+ others) was @DoYouKnowDeek who wrote:
He tweeted that at 5:58 p.m. His tweet was the most popular, but it wasn’t what started the trend. (By the way, “jawn” can mean just about anything, such as a place or event, in Philly street lingo.)
I wondered if it had anything to do with an article published in the Philadelphia Inquirer that morning about the way people on Twitter use particular words or acronyms depending on what city or region they are in. For example, CTFU – cracking the f**k up – is popular among certain Twitter users in Philadelphia. I scanned some #ImFromPhilly tweets and saw no evidence of that (and was fairly doubtful anyway). I checked to see if there were a lot of tweets with #ImFromNewYork and there were. I had seen these city battles before and figured something like that was happening again. I was correct, but it had nothing to with New York. So what was going on? More
I found this YouTube video a day after it was posted and it had less than 30 views. I linked to it on Twitter and Facebook and it got a few more views that way. Then I decided to see what would happen if I submitted it to BuzzFeed, a popular viral site. Within a day, the video was zooming into the thousands. I also gave the video a boost on Reddit. It was an interesting experiment to see what goes viral and how. As I write this, the video has nearly 30,000 views.