Given that crowdfunding is promoted primarily on the internet, it’s no surprise that there have been some interesting and downright bizarre ideas that people have tried to get crowdfunded. While it can be an excellent means of funding your business idea, there are people who have taken the most obscure ideas and tried to get the crowd to fund them. Here are our favourites.
1. Burntwood Alien Watch Tower
The description for this crowdfunding idea was as follows: “I will set up a Burntwood based Alien watch tower. Recording & streaming activity. Burntwood will be the first to know when they arrive”. This is neither a detailed business plan, nor did it convince many people that it would be a lucrative idea – it raised just £33. At this current moment, there is no planning for an ‘Alien watch tower’ to be erected in Brentwood (a small town in Staffordshire, UK).
2. Fish on Wheels
While this sounds like a hybrid between a fish and chips delivery service and ‘Meals on Wheels’ – this idea was exactly what it sounds like. Fish on Wheel is an “aquarium on wheels that enables fish to drive wherever they want to go. The fish controls the car by swimming in a certain direction”. Initially, this technology does sound interesting. But when given more than a few seconds thought, you start to question its purpose. This campaign raised around $5k, but was deemed unsuccessful as this was just 13% of its funding target.
3. Crystal Bacon
Possibly the most American thing in the world, Greg Kiesow from Illinois was asking pledgers to back him $20 – in exchange for a crystal ornament sculpted to look exactly like bacon. The ornament can be used decoratively, or as jewellery – as portrayed on the Kickstarter page. Amazingly, the crowd funded Greg $2,786! Sadly, this page is now offline, meaning if you become overcome with a desire to wear a translucent crystal strip of bacon as a necklace, you’ll have to look elsewhere.
4. My Little Po-Mo
We’ve all heard of My Little Pony, the toy horses that children play with. As a franchise, its owned by Hasbro, a toy company with revenues of around $4.45 billion. However, My Little Pony has also developed a very niche fan base – including a certain Jed A. Blue. Jed wrote an analytical essay series on the television series ‘My Little Pony – Friendship is Magic’. Emulating a university graduate level of writing, the essay series claims to “celebrate, examine, and analyse the show and its characters from a postmodern perspective, but in an accessible, fun, fannish style”. For a price, people can purchase various copies of this essay series. While I by no means doubt the essays credibility, I struggle to see why anyone would want to purchase it. However, people did – with 30 backers pledging over $1000.
5. Air Umbrella
A few years ago, the image of an ‘air umbrella’ went viral, and everyone became enthralled with the idea of never having to deal with umbrellas turning inside-out in the wind ever again. As a scientific alternative, the idea of air umbrella came about – the tool would blow a forcefield of air up above the user, forming an invisible dome around them to protect them from the rain. Sounds great, right? Unfortunately, after reaching $102,240 and then going AWOL for a year, the tech company behind it announced that it wasn’t going to happen due to ‘safety problems’. Whether or not the technology was ever invented is unknown, as there is no video evidence supporting it.