Crowdsourcing wants to make us all angels. And whatever your interests or idiosyncrasies, there is a project out there to get behind. Three classic Kickstarter projects illustrate this point:
- For the literary geek, there was Emoji Dick; 83 backers pledged $3,676 to help translate Herman Melville’s classic into Japanese emoji icons using Amazon’s Mechanical Turk.
- For vegan early adopters, there was Edible Cups; 229 backers pledged $10,429 to help Jelloware bring “the perfect biodegradable cup” to market (yes, it is a cup made of jelly, in case you were wondering).
- And for anyone who has needed a power nap in the office, there was Ostrich Pillow; 1,846 backers pledged $195,094 to help create what to the untrained eye looks like an overstuffed, poorly designed balaclava, but – according to the product development team – is actually “a micro environment in which to take a cosy and comfortable power nap at ease”.
These quirky projects have found fans around the globe. However, as many of the first-movers in this space discovered, participants received no equity in a project. Cash pledges are essentially donations to the company’s coffers and the rewards are more likely to be limited-edition merchandise, behind-the-scenes access via blog and email updates. Or simply a discount on the product for those who pre-purchase.
But while Kickstarter, Indiegogo and other similar platforms have attracted masses of media coverage thanks to the attention-grabbing projects they have championed, others have emerged that take a more long-term, thought-through and socially responsible approach.
The emergence of blockchain technology alongside the growing popularity of crowdsourcing has created something of a perfect storm. Today, there are dozens of platforms that will give participants much more than a t-shirt and an email update in exchange for their interest.
The most recent addition is Das33, a revolutionary crowdsourcing platform that is part of the Das ecosystem, an alliance of companies built around DasCoin. The launch follows a special event hosted by Das33 at the United Nations in New York at which the new crowdsourcing platform was unveiled to leading blockchain and sustainability experts.
Named after the 33 nodes on which the DasCoin blockchain is constructed, Das33 allows its users to submit their own projects, promote them, and fund their development, while anyone from the community can support ongoing projects and help take them from initial idea to reality.
The Das33 launch of 30 September 2018 comes at a time when ICO platforms are falling out of favour with the public. The Das33 platform addresses this issue through a governance model which ensures that every application is assessed by seasoned business professionals. All projects go through a vetting process. Businesses and the various elements of the business plan must pass an evaluation by an independent assessment committee which is chaired by former Goldman Sachs Asset Management Managing Director Ruud Hendriks.
The Das33 team says the goal is to offer a “do-it-together” approach to development by tapping into the wisdom of the community and having members fund the projects they want to see developed. The more convincing a project appears to be, the more support that project is likely to receive.
The ‘premium token’ and trailblazing project Greenstorc
Participants receive a ‘premium token’ which provides rewards upon the business achieving specific pre-determined targets. The tokens will also be tradable on DasExchange, the internal exchange for the Das ecosystem.
From the perspective of any business that needs to crowdsource the early stages of its evolution, Das33 creates a mechanism which ensures their shareholding is not diluted and they avoid unrealistic levels of debt. Companies can participate in as many rounds as they wish depending on their business needs, as long as the Assessment Committee is satisfied and as long as the previous round has been completed and tokens distributed as promised.
Das33’s pre-launch or “beta’ project, Greenstorc, is a next-generation energy company that creates clean energy from any heat source. Principally, it does this by boring holes in the ground. Greenstorc technology also harvests waste heat from industry and agriculture to generate zero emissions electricity. Its long-term vision is to bring electricity to millions of people in remote parts of the world who have never previously been connected to the national grid.
“The Storc.io pre-sale round on the Das33 platform was launched on 7th September,” explained Greenstorc CEO Paul Flynn. “We reached the target of €1.5 million in just 60 hours. With solid initial participation levels, and interest growing rapidly not only within the crypto community, but also the general public, we are now powering ahead with the scheduled rounds in confidence. With resources to hand, we can roll out our intensively tested German technology globally for the benefit of millions.”