T he internet has transformed creative industries. Words, music, video, images and games can be distributed worldwide, instantly and for free, delivering a cornucopia of delights to your screens and mine. Streaming services seem to be making a lot of money for someone, but that someone is rarely the creators who exist on those platforms. All of which goes some way to explaining the surprise and jealousy?
Building a new economy for creators requires a focused business strategy
Patreon provides business infrastructure to independent content creators: people making videos, music, podcasts, paintings, comics, games, magazines and other forms of media for fans online. It helps them turn the small subset of superfans within their broader fan base into paying monthly patrons and manage relationships with those patrons across the web. Patreon is angling to become the dominant platform for creators to build these membership businesses, a position from which it could expand into other products and services for creators. In this section of the EC-1 , I am digging into the structure, performance and health of Patreon as a business. The sections are organized as follows:. It charges creators 10 percent of their revenues through the platform, which is divided into a 5 percent platform fee and a 5 percent payment processing fee.
It helps creators and artists earn a monthly income by providing rewards and perks to their subscribers. Patreon charges a commission of 5 to 12 percent of creators' monthly income, in addition to payment processing fees. Patreon is used by YouTube videographers , webcomic artists, writers, podcasters, musicians, adult content creators,  and other categories of creators who post regularly online. Patreon was co-founded in May by Sam Yam and musician Jack Conte ,  who was looking for a way to make a living from his YouTube videos. They signed up more than , "patrons" in their first 18 months. In October , the site was the target of a large cyber-attack , with almost 15 gigabytes of password data, donation records, and source code taken and published. The breach exposed more than 2. In June , Patreon announced a suite of tools for creators to run membership businesses on the Patreon platform.
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