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Wednesday, 26 October 2011

UK Crowdfunding Platform Offers Creatives Opportunity to Win Grant

One of the newest UK crowdfunding platforms, PleaseFund.us is  offering creatives the opportunity submit a project and be in with a chance of being award a further funding grant. Creatives with the most popular creative project can win a grant of up to £1,000 to help make their dream a reality.


PleaseFund.us was established this year by Tarkan Ahmet and James Bailey, to offer creatives a hub through which to obtain funding for their dream projects and offering potential investors the opportunity to be part of something exciting that fits their passions. Projects currently seeking funding include novels, magazines, films & documentaries, and and even a live web streaming channel featuring live coverage of tennis matches and other racket based sports.

The opportunity to receive an extra funding grant is not only aiming to encourage more people to post their projects and/or invest but also to encourage support from the platform's Facebook fans and Twitter followers. Taking part is simple enough. First it is important to register with PleaseFund.us as only projects submitted through them will be considered. When registering it is import to ensure that full information is featured on the profile including a profile picture. Once the project is submitted it will then be considered for the grant.

Grants will be awarded on 25th November 2011, so it is important that projects be submitted at the earliest opportunity. A panel made up of the PleaseFund.us team and industry experts, along with Facebook fans and Twitter followers will review which projects should be considered. Feedback by way of "likes" on Facebook as well tweets and general comments will be reviewed, based on the most creative, novel and original concept. The most popular project will be declared the winner and awarded a grant of £1,000 with a runner up receiving £500.

If you have a winning idea and would like to participate then register your profile at PleaseFund.us website making sure to read the terms and conditions.

Image Credit; Comedy Nose

Friday, 21 October 2011

CrowdConf 2011 - The World's Biggest Crowdsourcing Conference

Guest Blogger, Mollie Allick

The Mission Bay Conference Centre San Francisco will play host to CrowdConf 2011, the world’s largest crowdsourcing conference.  Starting on 1st November, this second annual event will feature a series of workshops, seminars, and talks providing insights into the widespread use of crowdsourcing. If you missed last year’s conference or not sure what CrowdConf is all about then here is an indication of what will be featured.


The first day will include two great workshops focusing on research and industry specific tutorials. These workshops offer conference attendees a head start as they engage in a more intimate tutorial, with limited space, with other thought leaders and crowdsourcing experts. Workshops will be taught by Omar Alonso, Technical Lead for Team Bing at Microsoft and Matt Lease, Assistant Professor at the University of Texas who will focus on topics in the Research and Engineering Track. Also featured is author and Associate Professor David Alan Grier who will examine how to integrate crowdsourcing into existing organisations in the Business and Industry Track.

The main conference will take place on Wednesday, November 2 (click here for the full agenda) and is scheduled to run all day. The agenda focuses on practical tips and tools for understanding crowdsourcing through a range of perspectives including investing, philanthropy, community building, and creativity. The day will feature keynotes, debates, and interactive breakout sessions, and concluding with a networking poster reception. Some of the sessions include Charles Festa from Threadless speaking about community building in his talk "Moonwalk to Market: The Illusion of Moving Forward." and Hitendra Patel and Benjamin Sywulka from IXL Center who will do a plenary talk on innovation titled "Crowdsourcing Innovation: Seven keys to getting breakthrough results every time."



CrowdConf will feature many prominent guest speakers including: Jeff Howe, author and journalist who coined the term “crowdsourcing,” Philip Rosedale, Founder of Second Life, Mark Gerson, Chairman of Gerson Lehrman Group, Charlie Cheever, Founder of Quora, Sharon Chiarella, Vice President of Amazon Mechanical Turk, and more than fifty other incredible speakers representing the most influential and fastest growing crowdsourcing companies. For more information about the speakers visit the CrowdConf website.

Tickets for the event are on sale now so if you fancy learning all about crowdsourcing from some its most influential figures then see below for details of how to register. Crowdsourcing Gazette readers can get a $75 discount by entering the code CSGZT when registering.

Event: CrowdConf 2011
When: Workshops: Tuesday, November 1 (10am-3pm); Conference: Wednesday, November 2 (8:30am-6:30pm)
Where: Mission Bay Conference Center, 1675 Owens Street, San Francisco
Cost: $75 for workshops, including tutorial, notes and lunch. $450 for conference, including entry to the full-day program and networking reception, plus lunch and snacks throughout the day.

Acknowledgements; Thank you to Mollie Allick for her blog contribution. Mollie is the Conference Director for CrowdConf and the Events & PR Director for CrowdFlower. She can be reached at mollie@crowdflower.com.

Image Credit; CrowdConf

Thursday, 20 October 2011

Crowdsourcing The Patent Process

Over the last decade the number of patents filed every has risen to over 6 million, making it increasingly difficult to research an idea before filing a patent application. Given there are so many patent applications on record this looks like a job for crowdsourcing, a mantle that CrowdIPR has been quick to take up.

CrowdIPR is an Estonian startup platform that looks to take the burden of the patent research for prior art off the shoulders of the designer/innovator by tapping into the wisdom of the crowd. Before submitting a patent application it is necessary to carry out extensive research of the intended product. This involves meticulously reviewing everything that has been published relating to the idea. This task can be costly as you would need the services of patent lawyer or industry expert as well as time consuming and must be thorough to ensure nothing is missed. Patent attorney Mikk Putk had the idea for CrowdIPR when he was faced the vast amount of information encountered in prior art searches for new patents. 



There are of course other platforms available that are designed to make research easier and cost effective, such as Google Patents. However it lacks the depth and quality of results that you would get from a patent lawyer. CrowdIPR provides a combination of both cost effective easily obtained results with the high quality of a patent lawyer by crowdsourcing technology experts, designers etc from all over the world.
I have spent thousands of hours on priror art and patents studies over the past several years. While the process is often very interesting and occasionally even fun, it has not been without serious headaches. If you have ever dealt with such searches yourself, you are most likely nodding in agreement. Finding the right information is like looking for a needle in a haystack. -Mikk Putk, 3 Reasons for Crowdsourcing Patent Research
CrowdIPR offers benefits to both innovators looking to file their patents, and industry experts. For those looking to file patents, there is the cost advantage whereby a fixed fee can be negotiated with the experts rather than hiring someone on an hourly basis. CrowdIPR also offers its clients wider access to a broad range of knowledge, skills and language requirements. Industry experts and those with the right knowledge can earn additional income joining CrowdIPR's global community of service providers and calling on their wealth of knowledge and experience advising clients on potential patents and assisting them in their search for prior art.

Although founded in Estonia, CrowdIPR is now operating from an incubator in Newcastle provided by ignite100, an accelerator program that provides office space, seed capital, and mentoring to new startups. CrowdIPR is currently operating as a private beta platform however with the number of new patents emerging, the demand for quality research and results which crowdsourcing can provide could soon propel the fledgling platform into a leading service provider.

Source; Arctic Startup
Image Credit; Mr T in DC

Wednesday, 12 October 2011

Crowdsourced Media Site Lets Authors Award Prizes

ViewsHound, a user generated content site attributes its success through incorporating crowdsourcing in the search for high quality articles, awarding cash prizes to its community of authors. Now the media site has taken its use of crowdsourcing to the next phase by allowing authors to decide on how best to award the cash prizes.




Based in the UK's capital, ViewsHound was launched in May 2011 and invites authors to compete for daily cash prizes up to $120 by simply submitting an article. ViewsHound accepts commentaries and opinion-based posts covering a wide variety of topics such as politics, business, art and culture, travel, sport, and technology. Registration is free, and articles are subject to human editorial and plagerism checks, unlike other user generated content sites. 
We see huge potential in crowdsourcing as a means of revolutionizing journalism by bringing in a whole new style of writing and reporting. We’re always looking for ways to involve our users in what we do, and this new prize will further help us to identify and showcase the very best writing on the web - Ian Howlett, Editor in Chief, ViewsHound
ViewsHound prides itself in maximising benefits for its community of writers. In addition to the $120 prize awarded to winning authors, contributors can earn 50% of the site's advertising revenue. The latest development will see a further $10 per day up for grabs with the introduction of the Authors Prize. Even if no prizes are won contributors can benefit from ViewsHound's intensive promotional efforts to further expand its increasing readership. Anyone who contributes and publishes an article can link the piece to their own site or blog thus benefiting from ViewsHound's traffic.

So whether it is simply a hobby or a platform from which to launch a writing career, if you are interested in becoming a contributor then visit the site for more details.

Tuesday, 11 October 2011

UK Newspaper Puts Editorial Power in the Hands of the Crowd

The Guardian, one of the UK's top broadsheet newspapers has on many occasions benefited from crowdsourcing. Whether it involved investigating the financial affairs of Prime Minister Tony Blair in the Blair Rich Project, getting readers involved in uncovering the scandal of MP's expeneses, and more recently taking the pulse of the country following the UK riots in August, the Guardian has turned to the wisdom of the crowd for that all important lead. In a bold step the Guardian now is considering the use of crowdsourcing to help determine certain aspects of editorial policy.


The initial plan is to launch an experimental scheme in which carefully selected portions of the the news lists featuring stories from all over the world to be posted on a daily blog. Readers can browse through the lists and then convey their ideas to the paper's reporters and editors via Twitter. There are a number of concerns, most notably stories of a sensitive nature and embargoed sources possibly being made available for public perusal. 
Obviously, we're not planning to list all our exclusives or embargoed content and we'll also have to be careful not to say anything legally sensitive or unsubstantiated - Dan Roberts, Guardian National News Editor
Inviting the crowd to help shape editorial content is a bold move by the Guardian yet one of the most frequent comments made in conversation relates to the content of news feed. Numerous times people have uttered or heard how the newspapers are either riddled bad news or sensationalist trash. Now the crowd has the opportunity to put their convictions into practice and to shape the news. The blog is due to launch on Monday 17th October 2011 and no doubt other news outlets will be monitoring the Guardian's efforts with interest.

Source Article; The Drum
Image Credit;   Michael Bruntonspall

Monday, 10 October 2011

Lingotek Launches Crowdsourcing Contest for CrowdConf2011

Another leading crowdsourcing service provider has announced a competition in conjunction with the upcoming CrowdConf 2011. Lingotek, a world leader in the provision of collaborative translation solutions is offering fans the opportunity to win a unique prize by simply writing an essay on the importance of language translation in business. The winners will be announced at this year's CrowdConf event to be held in San Francisco on 1st and 2nd November.



Founded in 2005 Lingotek has grown into one of the leading providers of translation services. Lingotek's platform incorporates crowdsourcing to provide high quality translated documents at a fraction of the price compared to traditional providers. Many organisations have benefited from Lingotek's unique services, from government agencies, small professional firms and fortune 500 giants.

The CrowdConf contest is aimed at highlighting the advantages of high end quality translation services. To that end participants are invited to first of all visit and "like"  
the Lingotek Facebook page for full details of the contest's rules and requirements. Participants must produce an essay of no more than 500 words detailing the importance of  language translation for business. Entries will be judged by a panel made up of some of the leaders in crowdsourcing including; Rob Vandenberg, CEO and President of Lingotek, Woody Hobbs CEO of CrowdFlower along with founder & Chairman Lukas Biewald, and David Bratvold founder of the Daily Crowdsource.
The power of the crowd gives companies unprecedented efficiency in achieving their business goals. By harnessing communities for translation, Lingotek's enterprise customers save time and money on premium-quality translations to access and engage new markets. There's no better place to showcase the benefits of collaborative translation than at CrowdConf2011, the world's premier crowdsourcing conference. - Rob Vandenberg, CEO Lingotek
Deadline for entries is 21st October 2011 and winners will be announced at the CrowdConf event. The prizes up for grabs include a year's free use of the Lingotek platform (hosted version)  as well as a pair of CrowdConf tickets, with combined worth of over $36,000. To enter visit the Lingotek Facebook page, "like" it and start crafting that star essay.

Image Credit; Cervus

Monday, 3 October 2011

Trans Continental Partnership Give SMEs Boost with Crowdsourcing

UK based website, Wanobe.com, a leading provider of business solutions has announced its partnership with India's crowdsourcing leader Jade Magnet. The partnership aims to provide small and medium sized business (SMEs) in the UK and the rest of the world with cost-effective creative services.   




Wanobe.com is a web based platform that provides SMEs with definitive answers on all aspects of business. Whether it's finding a friendly bank that will provide that all important loan or advice on how to build a client network, Wanobe.com can help find the answer through its community of business people. The company was founded by former journalist, broadcaster, and writer David Nobel to help businesses by providing real time human answers to business concerns, in place of vague and unhelpful search engine results.

India's first crowdsourcing platform Jade Magnet provides crowdsourced marketing services across various media. Over 450 brands have benefited from Jade Magnet's community of 5000 service providers working in advertising, branding, graphic design, and product design. Within three years the company aims to become the top provider of creative crowdsourcing services for SMEs across the world. 

This transcontinental partnership is the first of many with solution based providers to help build Wanobe.com's Solution Centre. The move is in response to observations of numerous user requests for trusted service and technology providers. Wanobe.com look at potential partners' key indicators such as quality of work, history, and branding. Wanobe.com founder David Noble has praised Jade Magnet's reputation for high quality web-based design and marketing services that are also cost effective.
As we grow, we are adding providers from the across the globe to create an ecosystem that has multi-cultural understanding and is capable of providing creative solutions for various kinds of audiences. The UK is one of the world’s most important markets and Wanobe.com is helping us to reach out to the country’s millions of small and medium sized businesses. - Manik Kinra Co-Founder and CMO Jade Magnet
To celebrate the launching of this partnership, Jade Magnet has also announced a promotional offer. Any SMEs coming through Wanobe.com can claim a discount of 20% on Jade Magnet's web design and marketing crowdsourced solutions. This can be claimed by quoting the promotional code JMAM131. 


Image Credit; Josh Staiger