Gawker’s Rob Ford Crackstarter campaign is officially over. When it first started, we wondered here why readers should pay to see in the first place. Like all things drug-related, the campaign took a nose dive when the video became randomly unavailable.
The cash is now being divvied up, as promised, to Canadian charities that John Cook has deemed worthy. Apart from the ethics of making readers pay for source material, if you’re thinking about running a crowdfunding campaign for anything, you should remember to estimate fees into your goal:
The total take from Crackstarter was $201,199. Indiegogo, the service that hosted the campaign, withheld $8,047.96 in fees. PayPal, which processed the payments, withheld $8,368.43. That left the Crackstarter with a net take of $184,782.61, which has been held in a non-interest bearing account since PayPal released the money to us.
That’s over $16,000 that Indiegogo and PayPal pocketed jsut because Gawker readers are crazy enough to want to watch a mayor smoking crack. And they say there’s no money in journalism these days.