Category Archives: Crowdfunding Projects

Does ANY one or more of these harebrained schemes. in particular, grab you in ANY way whatsoever as having ANY potential at all as a crowdfunding project?

Several of my crowdfunding projects may be in the works soon. These are means to raising money for good works to benefit both you and me as well as, potentially, many others..

These are projects having noble goals, and which, otherwise, I would not be normally able to fund myself.

Three potential projects that I have in mind are as follows:

1. The Who Are You Project:

I found a lost camera in 1994 in Hawaii. I developed the pictures. I would like to find these young people (at the time) from somewhere in Asia, who were visiting Hawaii at the time and who lost their camera some 20 years before, and invite and treat them to a reunion back in Hawaii to personally receive from me these photos as well as a brand new camera (the old one—a tourist cheapie—is long gone). I would like to raise funds to find and gift these people.

I figure I would need to raise about $15,000 to cover the costs of bringing up to five people to Hawaii for a few days of celebration and reunion.

These funds would cover the costs of airfare, hotel rooms, dining, etc., as well as the cost of a brand new ‘replacement’ digital camera. The group would include the people in the photos, the person(s) responsible for finding them, and, of course, me!

2. The Travel Tales Transcription Project:

I have collected nearly 10,000 travel tales from around 1,750 world travelers and adventurers during my travels to 125 countries over the last four decades.

I have managed so far to transcribe about 200 hours of these tales, which represents about 1/3 of my total collection of around 600 hours of recorded travel stories. The good news is that all these stories are all in MP3 format and are ready for transcription. The bad news is that transcription is timely and costly. Once upon a time I could afford to transcribe them all, but now I cannot.

My mission is to put the passion of psychology back into travel and chronicle these phenomenal stories of people’s forays into new and different cultures and describe and highlight how they and people around the world benefit through travel and how international relations might be improved thereby.

I will have shortly published around 50 travel tales ebooks and audiobooks containing the first group of these stories. I would like to create 100 more of these books (including the material that remains in the final 2/3 (400 hours) of the recorded travel tales that I have collected.)

I figure I’ll need at least $10,000 to cover the cost of transcribing the remaining 400 hours of recorded material. This is presumably less expensive than typical commercial transcription. I am confident that I can obtain this for apx $25 per hour via the Internet.

3. The eStore Subscription Project:

If you’ve heard of the new “Netflix for Books” concept, then you know that it is a model for enabling readers to cherry pick and choose an unlimited number of ebooks to read from the enormous collections of ebooks from such huge providers as OysterBooks, Scribd, and a few others.

The trouble is that these are very big companies with hundreds of thousands of ebooks to choose from. Indie ebook publishers are largely missing from these collections.

My idea is simple: to create a business model for a similar subscription basis for independent and small publishers that have enough published material to offer in a smaller way to readers that might like to have access to these publishers’ creative works.

Such creative works could be eBooks, chapters, collections, articles, and collections of individual—in my case—travel stories that would never make into the enormous collections of these huge providers.

I think I have a way for independent authors and small publishers to accomplish this, i.e., to offer their own subscription-based estores for free or at a very low cost.

(I plan to include this potential benefit as an offshoot of the “transcription project” described above.)

4. The ‘Buried Treasure’ in a Book Project:

Finally, I’ve always had the dream of burying ‘a treasure in a book,‘ whereby people pick up the challenge to solve a mystery from uncovering the hidden clues that are buried in the book. Hypothetically, they uncover the clues, solve the hidden mystery buried within the book and actually go somewhere and dig up a buried treasure of some kind.

Now, there have been a few of these sorts of books that have come and gone, whereby people have purportedly dug up hidden, real buried treasure(s) of sorts. These have not been without controversy, however, and are rumored to have been ‘fixed’ and faked, whereby, for instance, friends and relatives, and so on, have compromised the integrity of these quests. I’m not saying that there has not been a legitimate one; I’m just not personally aware of or familiar with all the outcomes of these various buried treasures in books.

I’ve created an eBook (and soon an audiobook) with not one but SEVEN buried treasures in a book. It is called “Travel Tales of Michael Brein: My Best 100! THE TREASURE HUNT EDITION!”

The treasures are already ‘buried,’ figuratively and literally, and are ready to be hunted! I plan to keep the whole thing as above board as I possibly can: for instance, an escrow fund to manage the money and a committee of at least three people to determine if anybody has actually solved one or more of the mysteries.

I plan to use social media (the Internet) to manage and promote the quest to find these mysteries.

Since there are already seven ‘buried’ mysteries in the book, there are enough treasures to sustain the interest and rewards for all those treasure hunters involved in the quest. The solutions to the mysteries and rewards to be dispersed will be managed by the escrow company and a “Committee of Three” (or more).

The challenge is to be for a period of, say, 10 years. If I am gone by the end of 10 years—and the end of the project—any and all remaining funds are to go to charities that I have pre-designated at the outset. It is impossible to know how significant this will be, and, of course, how many—IF ANY—of the seven mysteries will have been solved by then. Let me say that these mysteries are NOT EASY!

How are the rewards to be funded? AHA! I plan to create a continuing crowdfunding of the pooling reward monies. As the funding grows, so do the rewards for discovering the seven ‘buried’ mysteries—the more crowdfunding, the more the rewards. When a ‘buried mystery’ is solved, one-N th of the reward will go to the successful treasure hunter.

For instance, if there are $700,000 of reward funds in the pool, the first successful treasure hunter will receive 1/7 th of the total (in this case, $100,000). Then six other potentially successful treasure hunters will share the remaining bounties, similarly, however these pooling funds grow.

Treasure hunters will need to be duly registered online (somehow) as valid participants in the treasure hunt, i.e., with a valid email address, and so on and so forth. AND, they will have to be shown as being valid purchasers of the ebook or audiobook, treasure hunt edition.

I have no idea yet regarding how to handle the taxes, if any, involved with all of this. It is no small. simple undertaking. So, it may never actually get off the ground!

The reward money is to be ALL the pooling crowdfunded money, minus the costs of administering the escrow account, whatever taxes are involved, and such other related expenses. Whatever is left is, again, to go to charities in the end.

My share of all this? I will strictly earn my money from the income generated from sales of the ebooks sold from my own website eStore as well as external sales through other distributors (if I can figure out how people can prove they’ve validly purchased and registered from other eBook and audiobook distribution sources).

If a treasure hunter is not a valid purchaser of a treasure hunt version and is not duly registered as a participant s/he cannot reap a reward!

LIKE ANY OF THESE CROWDFUNDING PROJECTS? Your suggestions and comments are most welcome!

Crowdfunding Projects in the Wind!

Crowdfunding Projects in the Wind!

It seems almost as if everyone’s doing it: Crowdfunding!

crowdfunding 123

I have a few new ideas on this and am wondering if anyone has any thoughts about them. Once upon a time I could have been able to fund one or more of them myself. Now, unfortunately, I am not able to. So, therefore, enter crowdfunding. Maybe one or more of these projects is worthy of a crowdfunding attempt? Any thoughts? Thank you.

For instance:


Harebrained? Crazy-Stupit? Clever?
What do you think?

And here’s another for instance:

Folks, I’ve invited people to hear about “Who Are You?” This is one of my own travel stories included in my book, “Travel Tales of Michael Brein: My Best 100!” which has been out in a couple of years already.

A group of tourists to Hawaii in 1994 lost their camera during their visit. I found it, developed their film, and tried to find them. Now, I am trying to go viral with it in a variety of ways.

Hey, we are connected by six degrees of separation (or fewer!) to everyone on our planet. So, what with the advent of the Internet and all kinds of synchronicities, who can say?

One day we’ll say, “Who’da thunk?” I want to toast these people in a personal visit to Hawaii one day!

So, if you can think of kewl ways to spread this virally, please let me know.

And, BTW, I am going to make this one of my seven ‘buried’ mysteries in a special version of the ‘My Best 100’ book: “The Global Treasure Hunt’” edition.

I’m going to grow a reward pot maybe via a crowdfunding project (note: I didn’t say that I was going to grow pot! –rather, a ‘reward pot’) to help fund both the quest for these people as well as 6 other buried mysteries that also remain to be solved. Solve ’em and reap the rewards!

Know anyone who loves treasure hunts, scavenger hunts, geo-cashing, searching for buried treasure, and the like? Please let ’em know! See the 1 minute video on YouTube of the Who Are You Project.

To view these crowdfunding projects please select “Crowdfunding Projects” from “CATEGORIES” on the sidebar on the left below.