Liz Gannes

Recent Posts by Liz Gannes Cause Crowdfunding Platform Raises $7.9M of Its Own, which helps people run online fundraising campaigns, has raised $7.9 million from a long list of backers.

San Francisco-based Rally’s investors include Relay Ventures, Floodgate Fund, Greylock Partners, Michael Birch, Google Ventures (where it is new partner Kevin Rose’s first investment), Collaborative Fund, Tim Ferriss, Eric Ries, Josh Spear and Scott Belsky.

While project-specific online fundraising a la Kickstarter and Indiegogo is particularly hot right now, Rally is about bringing more traditional fundraising online, by helping people tell stories about their causes and continue to raise money on an ongoing basis.

Originally called Piryx, the company’s first success story was South Carolina Republican Representative Joe Wilson, who famously shouted “You lie” at U.S. President Barack Obama when Obama was addressing Congress about healthcare in 2009.

More recent showcase campaigns include $80,000 raised for a man from Costa Rica who is committed to being a local leader to attend public affairs school at Cornell University, and $20,000 to help save a Minnesota church from foreclosure.

Unlike other crowdfunding platforms, Rally has built its own payment system, so its fee is just 4.5 percent of transactions. It also offers a set of analytics tools to test and improve the effectiveness of campaigns.

So far, the site has registered 1.5 million users, which includes people who have created causes, followed causes and donated to causes.

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Just as the atom bomb was the weapon that was supposed to render war obsolete, the Internet seems like capitalism’s ultimate feat of self-destructive genius, an economic doomsday device rendering it impossible for anyone to ever make a profit off anything again. It’s especially hopeless for those whose work is easily digitized and accessed free of charge.

— Author Tim Kreider on not getting paid for one’s work