Crowd Funding (for stake) Model Question to the Community

In most crowdfunding platforms there is a goal of getting the most funding you possibly can with stretch goals and incentives. I’ve been studying about stake rewarding crowdfunding of late and I’m wondering what the community thinks of the following idea.

With normal crowdfunding, people can fund up to any amount they are comfortable with. Higher funding levels usually result in higher rewards. In for-stake crowdfunding platforms this would result in the higher investors receiving higher stake in the project. The highest level investors would essentially have the highest level of vote if the stake tokens allowed for voting.

What if you could “pledge” any amount, but the most you could invest is the average of all pledges. The goal of this style of campaign would still be to hit its goal but to level the playing field a bit and distribute the “ownership” over a broader range of players.

What’s the good, the bad and the ugly of this idea? How would those motivated by wanting to own the most game the system? How would those who wanted the keep the average low game the system? What would be some solutions to not allowing peeps to game the system? Would we want to dissuade the gamers.

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Some thoughts

What I’d wonder about is the small investor who cannot meet the average? Some could still pledge twice as much as they want to relying on plenty of others pledging a lot less. This way they can knock out the small investor because the small guy knows that he cannot get to that average. Purpose is to reduce the number of people who can afford to pledge.

Obviously you would also need a system where if a person who pledged cannot meet the average for their spot to open up for say the next in line in the waiting list of those who missed the deadline.

For projects that wish to be highly inclusive/level-playing-field without a set goal, I think yes we want to minimise the gamers, because it is the ones with the money who can do the most gaming, and this removes the inclusive nature of the idea.

If it is like most other funding then they want as much as possible and don’t really care about being inclusive or level playing field then nah, just PR as much as possible and get teh high spenders dominate.

One way to level the playing field is to make the pledges secret and even the total secret until after the pledging is finished. Still gamable but removes some of the information the gamers would rely on.

Another way is to have a tiered system so the smaller pledges are averaged, then the medium, then the high rollers. Added to this the small/medium averages can be weighted upwards to lower the high rollers average and thus reduce their dominance.

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Weighted in a way to say the top X levels could not exceed the rest of the communities investment perhaps.

if 3 tiers

Set the boundaries for low <-> medium <-> high and tally the pledges for each group

then high average = (total_high * 0.8 / number_high)

then medium = ( (total_medium + (total_high * 0.15) ) / number_medium )

then low = ( (total_low + (total_high * 0.05) ) / number_low )

In effect we have removed 20% of the high rollers total pledge and added that into the medium and low totals for averaging.

Obviously the 20% coming off the high rollers would really have to be adjusted depending on the difference in the tier totals. Otherwise the low tier might still have too high an average if only a few in the low tier.

Maybe. Maybe the top 30% total pledges cannot exceeded the low 70% total pledges.

So something that limits the high rollers so they cannot dominate, but still allow their higher giving ability to help fund the project.


Another problem is that a high roller can bypass all this by pledging using two or more aliases

Instead of using the average amount, use the median amount. That greatly weights the influence of the majority, if that’s what you want.

For example:

I person contributes $1million and 1,000 people each contribute $10.

The average is $(1million + 1,000x10)/(1 + 1,000) = $1,008.99

The median is $10.

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Yep, I thought of the non-unique human issue and until we have something for that the games could continue for a long while. A partial solution to the non-unique human account issue might be to have each account tied to some kind of community process of work that makes multiple accounts too much effort to produce. This is a much broader topic but if you could pull this off and still have the onboarding process simple enough it could potentially work. Hard problem to solve for sure. I remember a long post or posts about unique human proof while still allowing for privacy a while back. I think the best solution in my head at least is the one I’ve described.