An Interview With Indiegogo CEO Slava Rubin On The Wild Rise Of Crowdsourcing

When you think of crowdsourcing, you usually imagine something like the Pebble smart watch or the Misfit Shine – gadgets that are hard to build in mainstream ways but take off by sparking a groundswell of support. But what about a crowdfunded Tesla museum? Or how about a grocery store that uses no packaging? Those kinds of projects are what Slava Rubin, founder of Indiegogo, is most excited about these days.

“Campaigns that were funded on Indiegogo at SXSW were funded by every single state in America and funded by 93 countries,” he said. These included films, musical projects, and even calls to get Detroit artists to SXSW.

In short, crowdfunding isn’t just for gadgets anymore.

Projects don’t have to be blockbusters, either. The no-packaging grocery, In.Gredients, raised a mere $15,000 to get off the ground, an entirely attainable amount in the world of crowdfunding but difficult to grab from a bank these days. The prizes for pledging included a pint glass and a plastic container – inexpensive stuff that makes funders feel good and helps the company out immensely.

Rubin was excited to see the growth of crowdfunded products, especially at SXSW, in areas not always associated with crowdfunding. As music, writing, and film becomes part of the Indiegogo/Kickstarter constellation, expect some cool projects to find grassroots support and to blow up at events like this across the country and around the world.