Items tagged with: creators
TikTok is an app that makes it easy for people to make short lip-synching videos, which unsurprisingly makes it a goldmine of creativity and memes. TikTok recently got in hot water with the Federal…
Article word count: 517
HN Discussion: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=19487600
Posted by panarky (karma: 18903)
Post stats: Points: 122 - Comments: 77 - 2019-03-25T23:03:33Z
#HackerNews #are #creators #for #mistake #paying #tiktoks #why
Deeplinks Blog by Cory Doctorow | March 22, 2019
With only days to go before the final EU debate and vote on the new Copyright Directive (weʼre told the debate will be at 0900h CET on Tuesday, 26 March, and the vote will happen at 1200h CET), things could not be more urgent and fraught. Thatʼs why...
Deeplinks Blog by Danny OʼBrien | March 20, 2019
We’re into the final days before members of the European Parliament vote on the Copyright and the Digital Single Market Directive, home of the censoring Article 13, and the anti-news Article 11. Europeans are still urging their MEPs to vote down these articles (if you haven’t already, call now...
Deeplinks Blog by Alex Moss | March 12, 2019
Last month, we asked EFF supporters to help save Alice v. CLS Bank, the 2014 Supreme Court decision that has helped stem the tide of stupid software patents and abusive patent litigation. The Patent Office received hundreds of comments from you, telling it to do the right thing and apply...
Deeplinks Blog by Karen Gullo, David Greene | March 1, 2019
Due to an editing error, a draft version of this article was published prematurely. Internet websites and forums are continuing to censor speech with adult content on their platforms to avoid running afoul of the new anti-sex trafficking law FOSTA. The measure’s vague, ambiguous language and stiff criminal and...
Deeplinks Blog by Elliot Harmon | March 1, 2019
Three years ago, we warned of a string of dangerous new policy proposals on the horizon. Under these proposals, platforms would be forced to implement copyright bots that sniffed all of the media that users uploaded to them, deleting your uploads with no human review. It’s happening. The European...
Deeplinks Blog by Joe Mullin, Daniel Nazer | February 28, 2019
What if we allowed some people to patent the law and then demand money from the rest of us just for following it? As anyone with a basic understanding of democratic principles can see, that is a terrible idea. In a democracy, elected representatives write laws that apply to everyone...
[IMG]Deeplinks Blog by Michael Barclay | February 25, 2019
EFF has just filed an amicus brief in support of Google’s petition asking the U.S. Supreme Court to review the long-running case of Oracle v. Google. The case asks whether functional aspects of computer programs are copyrightable, and...
Deeplinks Blog by Cory Doctorow | February 13, 2019
Deeplinks Blog by Daniel Nazer | February 6, 2019
The Supreme Court took a major step in cutting back on abstract software patents when it issued its landmark ruling in Alice Corp. v. CLS Bank. Since then, courts have thrown out hundreds of patents that never should have issued. Unfortunately, the Supreme Court’s ruling is under threat. The...
Public Interest Advocates, Local Governments, and Others Defend the Open Internet Order The Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit heard the case of Mozilla v. FCC today to determine whether the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is allowed to repeal its net neutrality rules and abandon its authority over the...
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Patreon couldn’t survive charging all creators just a 5 percent rake on the monthly subscriptions they earn from fans while building commerce tools like CRMs and merchandise to try to stay ahead of…
Article word count: 1171
HN Discussion: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=19432758
Posted by pseudolus (karma: 13681)
Post stats: Points: 123 - Comments: 151 - 2019-03-19T16:59:38Z
#HackerNews #but #creators #cut #grandfathers #its #old #patreon #revenue #ups
Patreon couldn’t survive charging all creators just a 5 percent rake on the monthly subscriptions they earn from fans while building commerce tools like CRMs and merchandise to try to stay ahead of Twitch, YouTube and Google. But it also didn’t want to screw all its loyal early creators.
So today, Patreon is overhauling its pricing. Any creator can still get a 5 percent rate, but just for a Lite version without bonus tools or different fan tiers. All of Patreon’s extra features will now be in the Pro plan, with an 8 percent rate, but with existing creators grandfathered in at 5 percent. And the new Premium enterprise plan for 12 percent (9 percent for existing creators) will offer full-service merchandise sales, multi-user team accounts and dedicated customer support.
If you want the lower grandfathered rates, you’ll need to join Patreon in the next few weeks before the new rates go into effect in early May.
“With this change, Patreon is a long-term independent company that doesn’t need anyone else. That’s the move we’re making here,” says Patreon’s SVP of Product, Wyatt Jenkins. More sustainable pricing means creators won’t have to fear Patreon selling out in desperation to someone like Facebook that might neglect or exploit them.
Instead, Patreon CEO Jack Conte tells me he wants to balance powerful features with right-sized pricing for different creator types to become the platform-agnostic home for subscription patronage when tech giants are each trying to build their own. “To have a different membership for each distribution platform, that’s not going to work. You need a single place for the bottom of your distribution funnel,” Conte explains.
Balancing rates and resources
Patreon now has 3 million fans paying 100,000 creators more than half a billion dollars per year, and it will cross $1 billion in payouts in 2019 after six years in business. But Patreon was starving on its 5 percent rate, which some venture capitalists tell me is why they passed on its funding rounds totaling $105 million led by Thrive Capital and Index. Now it might make enough to keep the lights on, retain ownership and maybe even earn a profit one day.
Jenkins tells me Patreon spent a year talking to more than 1,000 creators to figure out how to re-price its offering. “People don’t like change. But I think in terms of change, we’re going to be able to invest in the different products in different ways. We can put a lot of horsepower into membership,” he explains. The company didn’t want to screw up like when it changed its payment processing rates a year ago, leading to creator backlash and some exodus. “We unilaterally did something that impacted creators’ patrons. That was the real landmine we stepped on.”
Patreon’s new rates
What Patreon discovered was some creators, especially individuals and hobbyists, didn’t care for bells and whistles. They wanted cheap and easy recurring payments so they can focus on their art, so Patreon made the 5 percent Lite plan that strips out the extra features but keeps the old rate.
More serious videographers, illustrators, comedians and pundits wanted to offer different price tiers for different levels of exclusive content. They need analytics, special offers, integrations with other productivity and commerce apps and priority customer support when things break. That’s what creators will get for 8 percent, unless they’re grandfathered in at 5 percent.
But Patreon also found there were whole media organizations with 50 employees built atop its patronage platform. They needed to be able to share accounts and get immediate support when necessary. Meanwhile, tons of creators see merchandise as a powerful way to lure in fans who want signed photos, stickers and other swag each month. “Eighty-five percent of our creators tell us we need merchandise. ‘We spend our days in the post office licking stamps. You can get great negotiation leverage since you have scale, so why aren’t you helping us with this?’ We can’t build that on 5 percent,” Jenkins tells me. They’ll all pay the 12 percent Premium plan price unless grandfathered in at 9 percent. Patreon will, in return, process, pack and ship all their merchandise.
Read a deep dive of Patreon on Extra Crunch
Patreon is also changing its payment processing fees to make sure it doesn’t overpenalize smaller contributions, like creators’ popular $1 per month tiers. Now all transactions over $3 incur a 2.9 percent plus $0.30 fee similar to Stripe’s industry standard, while microtransactions under $3 cost 5 percent plus $0.10. Existing creators get the old rates, and people paying via PayPal from outside the U.S. get hit with an extra 1 percent fee.
The battle for fan subscriptions
Surprisingly, one of Patreon’s most popular creators told me they actually felt bad about being grandfathered in at a lower price, because why should they get special treatment compared to other artists who just might not be as tech savvy. That said, they weren’t going to voluntarily pay a higher rate. “I guess I’m not surprised,” Conte responds. “I’ve found that creators are really humble and selfless, always thinking about other people. I can imagine them saying ‘What about these people? Why am I paying less than them?”
If Patreon can power through the rate change without breaking momentum, it could have a bright future. It’s started a patronage trend, but leaked documents show Facebook plans to charge creators up to 30 percent like YouTube already does, and Twitch charges an astronomical 50 percent. But with far more restrictions on content and far more distrust accrued after years of forsaking creators and tense negotiations, Patreon’s neutral platform with the cheapest rate could remain the fan subscription leader at a time when ad revenue shares are proving inadequate to support turning one’s passion into their profession.
Patreon co-founder and CEO Jack Conte
When TechCrunch broke the news that Facebook planned to charge up to 30 percent, Conte said, “Honestly, it was relieving but really disappointing in some way. I think competition is good. I hope there are many membership products. I hope they’re successful and [give creators a choice]. Right now, it’s not a choice. Facebook’s product is not usable. The folks that have used Facebook’s product have turned it off. From a competitor standpoint, it confirmed my thought that Facebook doesn’t understand creators.”
That’s also why he hopes that one day the tech giants might just integrate Patreon rather than compete, and they could each get a cut of subscription revenue.
Looking forward, he says the toughest challenge for Patreon will be building three different products for three distinct types of creators without the infinite wallets of its rivals. “I think Patreon will be raising for a long time,” Conte says. That will fund Patreon’s plans for eventual international operations, where 40 percent of patrons and 75 percent of creators live. Right now Patreon is offered only in English and supports U.S. dollars. But if it can spin up local languages, currencies and payment processors, Patreon could be where creators around the world go to share with their biggest fans.
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Jordan Peterson, a Canadian professor who has built a reputation for fighting ‘political correctness’ and ‘cultural Marxism,’ and the Libertarian comedian and pundit Dave Rubin announced Monday that they would launch an alternative to the crowdfunding website Patreon after the removal of several high-profile right-wing users of the service.