I am literally leaving the country after I hit publish on this piece. Seriously — if you need me I’ll be scarcer than Snowden. I’m about to ruffle some feathers. But the more I talk to friends and colleagues, the more I hear frustration with the free-money mentality brought on by the phenomenon that is crowdfunding.

Free money — who wouldn’t want a grab at that?! But we can all agree that nothing is free. Contributed funds, and even the appeal for them, are not without strings attached. Most dangerously, a sloppy fundraising campaign runs a high risk of alienating your audience — the people you’ll need when it comes time to market and sell that thing you’re raising funds to create.

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