The Geek Biker

Rambles of a geek that rides a bike

Monthly Archives: March 2012

A Conversation About Crowd Funding

A conversation about crowd funding and how some of the crowd funding sites work. You can learn a thing or two from Nelson Muntz but you’ll notice that I tend not to listen and have to ask questions twice.

The conversation started out talking about how much money Tim Schafer raised for his new adventure game and move to a comic drive on After that we started talking about how they make their money in general.

I removed a few names.

TvZ: holy crap :
Nelson Muntz: there’s clearly A LOT of money to be attracted from the general public
Nelson Muntz: i mean a comic book drive got over a million..
Nelson Muntz: and it’s not even a popular webcomic!
Nelson Muntz: The finished game in all of its awesome glory DRM free on PC, Mac, and Linux, or via Steam for PC and Mac, exclusive access to the Beta on Steam, access to the video series, and access the private discussion community.
Nelson Muntz: basically, they’re asking popular to buy for the game upfront
TvZ: that is what crowd funding is all about. As part of the “reward” you buy the product and a bit more.
Nelson Muntz: exactly..
Nelson Muntz: and it clearly works very well
Nelson Muntz: basically once you have your name out there
 Nelson Muntz: it’s brilliant
 TvZ: yip. and to be fair, this is Tim Schafer. Not a Joe Nobody.
 Nelson Muntz: exactly
 Nelson Muntz: seriously, kickstarter is a briliant business model!
 Nelson Muntz: even a few percentage cut is HEAPS
 Nelson Muntz: project has 74680 backers..
 TvZ: haha. yip.
 Nelson Muntz: so average $36 ..
 TvZ: Advertising is the internet’s source of money
 Nelson Muntz: yeah
 Nelson Muntz: kcikstarter, with it’s partnership with with amazon, can literally print money..
 Nelson Muntz: they dont need any ideas.. dont need any costs (apart from hardware), and can just let people pay them shitloads to effectively host a blog..
 Nelson Muntz: i’m a backer for that comic drive, and out of their 1,254,xxx, “the final total for how much we paid to Kickstarter and Amazon in fees: $106,799.87”
 Nelson Muntz: so almost 10%..
 TvZ: which comic drive?
 Nelson Muntz:
 TvZ: oooh right
 Nelson Muntz: but sreiously.. close to 10%..
 Nelson Muntz: on probably 0.01 % cost/
 TvZ: hahaha, that is true. backign a hardware project will probably require them to invest in some hardware to build whatever they are selling
 TvZ: Like me, I have to build my own press
 Nelson Muntz: haha .. i mean the publishers / those putting the drive might not be rolling in money..
 Nelson Muntz: but the dudes running kcikstarers.. it’s literally raining down gold coins..
 TvZ: yip. not sure how they make their profit. As far as I know they don’t take a cut of the pledges? Advertising?
 Nelson Muntz: they charge fees
 TvZ: for?
 Nelson Muntz: “the final total for how much we paid to Kickstarter and Amazon in fees: $106,799.87”
 TvZ: shite
 Nelson Muntz: exactly.. it’s almost a 10% cut!
 TvZ: mmm. yip. that is a lot.
 TvZ: so yeah, just host you stuff and get paid.
 TvZ: Wonder how many projects are on there that nobody ever heard about
 Nelson Muntz: probably plenty
 TvZ: because it just gets lost in the bunch
 Nelson Muntz: but the thing is, most dont use kickstarter to promote the drive..
 Nelson Muntz: all of them advertise their drive elsewhere..
 Nelson Muntz: and they just flock to kickstarter to pay
 Nelson Muntz: effectively, kickstarter’s just a blog with a nice big client db behind it..
 Nelson Muntz: so it’s got shitloads of data..
 Nelson Muntz: customer data..
 Nelson Muntz: perfect for trends and stuff if they start introducing ads..
 Nelson Muntz: how’s your drive going?
 TvZ: pretty quiet. well that is after last week. so still at 26%
 Nelson Muntz: yeah.. you need to have more friends 😀
 Nelson Muntz: or more non-stingy friends 😀
 TvZ: yeah, my friends are pretty stingy
 TvZ: then again, paying for a book in AUD is pretty expensive
 Nelson Muntz: yaeh i know .. must say tho.. if most donate 50, you’ll need 40 friends..
 Nelson Muntz: come on .. :d
 TvZ: pfft. 50*8.5 = 425 ZAR.
Average book price in South Africa is ZAR 150
which is about $15 to $17
 TvZ: not to mention that the lot started getting kindles so they can pirate books *Author’s note, I don’t know anyone who actually pirates ebooks, only heard it is possible and easy*
 Nelson Muntz: yeah, you need more rich Australian friends..
 Nelson Muntz: like *Name Removed*.. and *Name Removed*.. and *Name Removed*
 Nelson Muntz: haha
 Nelson Muntz: just do a work drive 😀
 TvZ: well everyone at work knows about it. well everyone that would be almost interested.
 Nelson Muntz: they clearly don’t want you to strike it rich and bugger off 😀
 TvZ: ah yes. because is a book on spamming a scammer will outsell Harry Potter and I’ll be set for life
 Nelson Muntz: never know.. you might be a genius writer ..
 Nelson Muntz: well ok, not outsell harry potter..
 Nelson Muntz: could still make a decent buck tho..
 Nelson Muntz: it’s like those iphone apps thing..
 TvZ: Well I know I’m a genius writer. My writing might not be considered by others as genius
 Nelson Muntz: many shit.. but now and then, one pops up and makes shitloads of money
 TvZ: I want to be that one. Except to make money, not get money made of shit.
 TvZ: you see, I had another idea to further “Spamming a Scammer” but that will hang off the review and result of the book drive.
 TvZ: but the idea is a bit hush hush at the moment as I don’t want my genius to be grabbed by someone else
 Nelson Muntz: haha.. seriously want to strike it rich and get out of here eh? 😀
 TvZ: nah, not yet.
 TvZ: so once the book hits millions (read 1 mil = 2 copies sold). I might put the next step in action.
 Nelson Muntz: well you sold like 8 or something haven’t you?
 Nelson Muntz: assuming it actually gets printed!
 TvZ: Even if the funding fails (I hope not) then I would still get it printed, at least one for myself. not putting this hard work in for nothing. And it should still go straight to Amazon as printable. if all goes to plan. so it will be available to public
 Nelson Muntz: yaeh.. and should at least print something in pdf form..
 TvZ: yip. that is part of the Amaxon package as I understand it.
 TvZ: *Amazon
 TvZ: the other one sounds like a porn affiliat
 Nelson Muntz: rofl
 TvZ: and one day I will learn how to spell affiliate
 Nelson Muntz: you gonna get anyone to proof read your book first?
 TvZ: Yip. probably will. so far I’m leaving the emails received and sent exactly like they are. spelling mistakes and everything. just changing font and attachments for easier reading
 Nelson Muntz: yeah, but i assume the book’s not just all emails right?
 TvZ: Started with a new scam artist. Russian worker scam…holy crap that is a difficult read
 Nelson Muntz: as in you’ll spin a fascinating tale around the emails..
 Nelson Muntz: you’re so getting shot :d
 TvZ: yip. the first part of books explains everything from start to finish. then I add a few extras in for reading fun
 Nelson Muntz: did you keep the one you got scammed?
 TvZ: nope. that was long ago and a different kind of scam
 Nelson Muntz: i’ve been scammed once i think?
 Nelson Muntz: dodgy websites not really selling the product..
 Nelson Muntz: but lucky i went through paypal and got the money back..
 Nelson Muntz: haven’t been scammed via emails yet coz i never respond to anything..
 TvZ: lucky. Paypal is good that way. I think email scams are getting pretty rare though I respond to them, or one of my email accounts has been listed as a “don’t send scams here or you will be spammed” list
 Nelson Muntz: rofl
 Nelson Muntz: i think it’s fairly rare these days..
 Nelson Muntz: or gmail good enough to filter most of it.
 TvZ: yip. now it is all viagra and I’m not quite ready to respond to those
 Nelson Muntz: you reckon they are scams too?
 TvZ: haha, no idea. Buy a product and let me know
 Nelson Muntz: come on.. you know you responded to those enlargement ads…
 TvZ: nope. not yet…

Promoting a book I hear you say?


The new Persona : Spamming a Scammer

If you’ve been following the Spamming a Scammer project at you might have noticed that I’ve created a new persona after hooking one of the scams.

Unfortunately I can’t write his full name, just in case the scam artists do an internet search for him. But you should be able to see the name on the card.

As part of the ongoing efforts to spam the scam artists, I had to create an I.D. card for Cliff.
I’m pretty proud of the result.

First the background image:
California DMV

Then I just added a layer of text and a mugshot of a biker in USA:
Driver's license layer

And lastly sign it and scan it back in in a lower resolution:
Scanned Driver's License

You see, it’s not all fun and games, there is some work involved in writing spam emails to scam artists.

Keep up with the project: