Here’s our curated weekly roundup of the breaking news and must-read thought leadership pieces on the crowd economy spotted by the Crowdsourcing Week team. In case you were offline for the past few days, we came across Indiegogo’s trying to sell crowdfunding to big firms, a new crowdsourcing video platform, sharing economy in Europe, crowdfunding predictions and many more. 

Will large companies do better in crowdfunding campaigns?

Indiegogo, a “reward-based crowdfunding platform” has decided not just to help smaller businesses anymore but, also bigger ones by selling crowdfunding. While it may sound profitable, some experts think differently, BBC writes. This programme is limited to Fortune 1000 and 500 global companies and though Slava Rubin clarified that the platform was for everyone, Duncan McCann, a researcher said this offer might single out entrepreneurs who rely on Indiegogo.

The firm said it wanted to help them crowdfund their own research ideas and get customers to vote with their wallets on which to develop by pledging cash to back their favourites. Indiegogo said that firms would be able to ask its users to suggest ideas for which it could then seek financial backing and input from potential customers. They could also put out their own projects to gauge the potential market and attract funding and would receive promotional and strategic support from Indiegogo staff, it said. While Indiegogo will hope the move proves lucrative, one expert warned that it also risked crowding out entrepreneurs. And other people have speculated that few people would be interested in funding projects on behalf of multi-billion pound companies.

Crowdsourcing videos: the future of media?

Want to collect videos from anywhere in the world? Check this article and find out more how Emily Forbes created her video crowdsourcing platform. Here’s how Seenit was born via Elite Business Magazine. Turn your community into a film crew – a new way to produce videos.

The seed for Seenit was sown when Forbes was sent to cover a large-scale protest in South Africa. “As soon as I arrived, I very quickly realised that the whole community was already filming on their phones and GoPros,” she says. So rather than trying to muscle her way into the action and shoot her own footage, she asked members of the crowd to send her their videos. Not only did people start sending her film but they also began introducing her to others in their network with content of their own. “With no budget, camera equipment or network, I was suddenly pulling video from a whole country,” she says. “That was the start of Seenit.”

AdDuplex introduces AppStretch

Crowdsourcing is also integrated on mobile apps. This AppStretch allows “developers to crowdsource feature ideas from fans, enable crowdfunding, and then promote the new features the most effectively via social support “currency,” via WinBeta.

With millions of apps out there for iOS, Android, and Windows, it can be hard for a smaller developer to figure out what to do next to make that increasingly difficult living. That’s where AppStretch comes in, offering to help them identify, fund, and promote the best new app features. Essentially, AppStretch is intended to help developers determine for which features their best fans would be willing the shell out the most cash. The system will allow developers to crowdsource feature ideas from fans, enable crowdfunding, and then promote the new features the most effectively via social support “currency.”

Crowdfunding predictions in 2016

Will equity crowdfunding be any less different than the last year? Based on crowdfunding additions such as ‘Regulation A+, rules of Title III, Reg CF’ here are some predictions that we may see in 2016 according to Ron Miller via Crowdfund Insider.

Industries that have historically experienced difficulty or had access to fewer options when it comes to raising capital will find that equity crowdfunding is a viable fundraising method. VC firms have tended to focus on industries such as tech, which are perceived to offer better returns and relatively quicker development cycles. As companies in sectors not favored by VCs experience success in attracting capital using equity crowdfunding, it will encourage other firms in these sectors to use the method.

People- and mobile-powered weather forecasts in India

India is changing the way weather is being observed through crowdsourcing and Internet of Things. Can you imagine the power of 1 billion mobile devices transmitting weather forecast in a country such as India? Here’s what Business World India said.

Crowdsourcing weather data is also an enormous opportunity (big data!) with India reaching the watershed of 1 billion mobile subscribers in October 2015. Energy utilities can light up streets more efficiently by using visibility data piped into smart grids. Live information about a dip or spike in temperatures can help utilities respond to the power situation more economically. Weather-mapping the entire country will become hugely comprehensive with almost no data gaps. Internet Of Things completes the fusion by empowering everyday devices to use such data effectively.

EU to meet member states to discuss national rules for emerging crowd-based platforms like Uber and Airbnb

Is it good news for the “gigsters” and Uber-like companies? The EU Commission plans to discuss with state members the rules pertaining to collaborative business models, Business Insider writes.

According to Bloomberg, the European Commission wants to have discussions with member states to find out how national rules may be blocking the expansion efforts of new technology companies. It believes that removing legislative roadblocks could help fuel the European economy at a time when countries like Greece and Portugal are facing austerity.

Following the discussions, the Commission is expected to issue guidance on how EU law applies to collaborative business models, according to Bloomberg.

[Photo credit: Seenit]

There are tons of fantastic stories out there. What else caught your eye this week? Did you come across some breaking news or a good thought piece?