Music, Games Lead Kickstarter's $320 Million In 2012 Pledges

Business Matters: Are Kickstarter Pledges Taxable Income?

Business Matters: Are Kickstarter Pledges Taxable Income?

Kickstarter is just under 4 years old, but 2012 may have been the year the crowdfunding service went mainstream. The New York-based startup funded 19 films at the Sundance Film Festival, the Oscar-nominated documentary "Incident in New Baghdad," a new font for the city of Chattanooga, Tennessee and thousands of music projects.

Music had more successfully funded projects -- 5,067 out of 9,086 attempts -- than any other category in 2012. Kickstarter received just under $35 million in pledges, up 84% from $19 million in 2011, from 1.38 million people for music projects, according to statistics released by the company on Tuesday. The average funded music campaign raised $6,900.

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In all, Kickstarter received $319.8 million in pledges, up 221%, from more than 2.2 million people in 177 countries in 2012. It collected $274 million, up 238%, in pledges from successful projects. Nearly 571,000 people backed two or more projects, about 50,000 backed 10 or more projects and 452 backed 100 or more.

The games category was the most financially successful category. Although only 911 games were funded, they raised a total of $83.1 million from 1.38 million backers -- an average of $60.22 per pledge. Film & video had more launched projects (9,600) than music but fewer successful projects (3,891).

Musician Amanda Palmer had one of the 17 projects that raised more than $1 million in 2012. The "Theatre is Evil" project and related live shows received $1.19 million from 24,883 backers. The album debuted at No. 10 on the Billboard 200 in September and has sold 35,000 units to date, according to Nielsen SoundScan.

The most-funded Kickstarter project of 2012 -- and of all time -- was the Pebble E-Paper Watch for iPhone and Android. It raised $10.2 million from 68,900 backers.