YouTube Quietly Launches a Crowdfunding Feature…

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YouTube has quietly rolled out their anticipated crowdfunding feature in Australia, Japan, Mexico, and the U.S.

YouTube had teased the feature at VidCon in June. This could kill the need for YouTube creators to use secondary platforms, such as Patreon and Kickstarter.

+Top Music YouTubers Reveal Their Secrets At VidCon

YouTube is calling the new beta feature “Fan Funding”. Creators that are interested in enabling the feature can apply here.

Once Fan Funding is enabled, support buttons appear on the channel page and on individual videos. Users can donate $1 – $500 per day.

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Creators can only solicit voluntary funding to support their YouTube uploads.  YouTube says creators cannot use Fan Funding to raise funds for a tour, or any other specific future goal.

In the U.S., YouTube takes $.21 from every donation + an additional 5 percent.

Fan Funding is currently enabled on desktop and on Android. Other platforms will roll out soon.


Nina Ulloa covers breaking news, tech, and more. Follow her on Twitter: @nine_u


14 Responses

  1. Anonymous

    Patreon is MUCH better:

    You don’t pay Google, people can donate more than $500 and — more importantly — you can raise money for anything, including touring, your rent and that new guitar!

    Plus, you can use Patreon on all platforms, including and other YouTube competitors.

    • Anonymous

      …plus, Patreon is a nice environment and they’re not on the planet to screw you…

  2. Anonymous

    “In the U.S., YouTube takes $.21 from every donation + an additional 5 percent”

    Which means 26% if we assume that the average visitor donates $1…

      • Anonymous

        I’m pretty sure I saw somewhere that the average user is expected to donate about $1.

        But ‘pretty sure’ and ‘saw somewhere’ may not be the strongest argument ever so you’re right, it’s an assumption.

        Still, I’d rather pay a service like Patreon, that is owned by artists, than a service owned by the world’s largest advertising agency — especially when the artist-owned service offers a much better product.

        • Patreon raised $15Mil in Venture Capital

          “Patreon is…owned by artists”

          not exactly…

          But, who says its not cool to want to support venture capitalists? They need the dough, and haven’t ever done anything that wasn’t in the artist’s best interests.

          • Ken D. Webber

            I saw the quote “Patreon is owned… by artists.” and then someone’s ignorant reply of “not exactly…” and I would like to say that you don’t know what you’re talking about. It is true that angel investors have invested in Patreon, however, Jack Conte CEO of Patreon has stated that he has partnered with investors yes, BUT… investors that have allowed him to maintain control of the organization! So your opinion of “not exactly…” is misleading, wrong, and an attempt to smear Patreon and its people.

  3. Peter Hollens

    I do think the experience is better on Patreon or Subbable because you get to become part of those creators inner circle, and part of their growth instead of just a tipping jar experience. I love they are doing this, but in the end, if this does TOO WELL wouldn’t that make content creators just turn off their ads and cannibalize their entire revenue stream?

    Stoked they are doing it. — I think it’s a step in the right direction. Huge props to Jack Conte & the green bros!

    • Anonymous

      “I do think the experience is better on Patreon or Subbable because you get to become part of those creators inner circle, and part of their growth instead of just a tipping jar experience”


      And don’t forget you have to sign Google’s new controversial contract if you want to make money from YouTube in the future:

      “Catalogue Commitment and Monetization. It is understood that as of the Effective Date and throughout the Term, Provider’s entire catalogue of Provider Sound Recordings and Provider Music Videos (including Provider Music Videos delivered via a third party) will be available for the Premium and Free Services for use in connection with each type of Relevant Content, (excluding AudioSwap Recordings, which will be at Provider’s option) and set to a default policy of Monetize for both the Premium and Free Services, except as otherwise set forth in this Agreement. Further, Provider will provide Google with the same Provider Sound Recordings and Provider Music Videos on the same day as it provides such content to any other similarly situated partners. The foregoing will be subject to reasonable quantity of limited-time exclusive promotional offers (in each case, with a single third party partner) (“Limited Exclusives”), as long as a) Provider provides Google with comparable exclusive promotional offers and b) the quantity and duration of such Limited Exclusives do not frustrate the intent of this Agreement.”

      This means that you will never sell a song again if you sign with Google. Your entire catalogue will be available not only as streaming, but as free download as well on YouTube on release day.

      A safer and much more artist-friendly strategy is to embed videos from YouTube alternatives like in your tweets and combine with Patreon as you suggest.

      This way, you don’t have to sign your rights away to Google, you can raise money for anything you want, people can donate more than $500, you can still make exclusive iTunes releases, and you support other musicians.

  4. Paul Resnikoff

    YouTube’s examples of how to ask for funding seem really unclear… they need to work on creating a brighter line especially as this grows.

    • Carlos Paez

      I agree. They need to be more clear as to what exactly they intend creators to use this for. I think crowd funding on YouTube is a great idea and it makes it convenient for a lot of people that have their content on Youtube, but they’re going to have to work on this some more.

  5. high exalted

    ill fund it myself and ill keep it off all that as much as possible.

    If Google, Sergei and some other top tech boys like Jaron et all wanna get on this monetization thingy, yeah they know what im talking about, up there especially and digi networks etc. then get the fuck at me in the flesh somehow cause im not in a position in these jurisdictions to just roll up on them and this isnt a build it and they will come idea, so if not that then otherwise ill be looking for ways to stack money outside of the music bazniss, youtube etc. unless there is some way to get a reasonable and fair compensation for it all without having to whore my face on every billboard everywhere or resort to the hipster socialist things…


  6. Ari Herstand

    The biggest difference between Patreon and YouTube is the customer service. If you have any issues with Patreon, you can get a response from a human in less than a day typically. YouTube? Good luck finding even a contact email!

    • Anonymous

      “If you have any issues with Patreon, you can get a response from a human in less than a day typically”

      And a good, honest one at that — while I think most of us sense the opposite with Google these days: A feeling of dishonesty, of cheating; perhaps best shown by the fact that the proudly announced 66,000 results for your Google query usually turn into 354 actual results when you reach the last page.

      I really don’t want to do business with a corporation that can’t tell the difference between 354 and 66,000…