Crowdfunding gives rise to projects truly in public domain

CrowdfundxPooling money for a cause online gets a new spin as small donors help lay the foundation for major municipal innovations, galvanizing communities.

When money for the Statue of Liberty’s pedestal ran short, publisher Joseph Pulitzer launched a call for donations in his New York newspaper and raised more than $100,000 in six months. About 125,000 people contributed $1 or less.

That was 1884.

When three 20-somethings came up with “+Pool” — the creation of community swimming pools that float in New York’s polluted East River and are filled with filtered river water — they put their plea out on a website and raised more than $41,000 within a week.

That was three years ago.

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