Kickstarter and the NEA Are Completely Different Things

This is a pretty good column, but it’s shame that it takes five paragraphs to make the ¬†important point that Kickstarter and the NEA are fundamentally different kinds of entities, so to compare how much they respectively “raise” doesn’t make a lot of sense. The NEA is not concerned with raising money from individual donors at all.

The reason this matters is because people unfamiliar with Kickstarter and/or how government arts funding works might read Issacson’s comment and assume, considering the source, (this was at an “ideas festival” after all), that this is a case where a smart young entrepreneur is beating the government at it’s own game. But as Boyle explains (without actually calling out Issacson for making a not-very-well-thought-out comparison), that’s not actually what’s going on here.