crowd·​fund·​ing | \ˈkrau̇d-ˌfən-diŋ \

Definition of crowdfunding 

: the practice of obtaining needed funding (as for a new business) by soliciting contributions from a large number of people especially from the online community

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Crowdsourcing and crowdfunding are two words that have recently found their way into the crowded pool of English. Crowdsourcing, which typically refers to the practice of soliciting services, ideas, or content from a large group of people online, was coined by Jeff Howe in a 2006 article in Wired, and crowdfunding was created by entrepreneur Michael Sullivan in that same year. Both words conceptualize "the crowd" as a vast online community from which something needed may be obtained. In crowdsourcing, the crowd is called upon for needed assistance or information. A well-known use of crowdsourcing is Wikipedia, whose content is the result of various contributors. Crowdfunding, on the other hand, involves a more specific request: the crowd is solicited for financial contributions to a particular venture or cause, such as a film project or cancer research.

Examples of crowdfunding in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

The angry orange balloon has gotten the approval to go aloft from London's mayor, Sadiq Khan, and has drawn about 23,000 pounds (or roughly $30,000) in donations to a crowdfunding site. Julie Hinds, Detroit Free Press, "Does London's Baby Trump deserve spot among 5 best Trump parodies?," 6 July 2018 According to a crowdfunding site, Woodroffe had moved to Ucayali to study plant medicine and become an addiction counselor, Reuters reports. Casey Quackenbush, Time, "A Judge Has Ordered Arrests Over Killing of a Canadian in the Peruvian Amazon," 24 Apr. 2018 There seems to be momentum behind this idea—Nerdalize has launched a crowdfunding site for the project that has already exceeded their goal of €250,000, with 27 days left to go, and is now aiming for half a million euros. Sophie Weiner, Popular Mechanics, "Dutch Company Experiments with Using Servers as Water Heaters," 2 June 2017 There are very clear advantages to crowdfunding scientific investigations. Neel V. Patel, Slate Magazine, "How Interesting Does Science Have to Be for the Public to Fund It?," 4 Jan. 2018 On the first day, the crowdfunding page raised enough for the bond. Pamela Ren Larson, azcentral, "These moms united to help immigrant mother rejoin separated kids in NYC," 6 July 2018 Bayaraa’s friends have responded to the deadly crash by setting up a crowdfunding page that has raised more than $13,000 as of Sunday. William Lee,, "No bail in fatal DUI crash in Logan Square involving rideshare car," 10 June 2018 Wellwishers have donated more than $47,000 through a crowdfunding page to support the family's future. Fox News, "Toddler who lost arms, legs to meningitis heads home," 1 June 2018 Haneefah McCrary, Aliyana’s mother, launched a crowdfunding page to raise money for Aliyana’s registration fees and gown. Cassie Owens,, "This Bucks County teen isn't letting sickle cell stop her pageant dreams," 17 May 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'crowdfunding.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of crowdfunding

2006, in the meaning defined above

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Last Updated

9 Nov 2018

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Time Traveler for crowdfunding

The first known use of crowdfunding was in 2006

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