What is Fotofund?
Fotofund is a crowdfunding platform exclusively for photo-based works. It is the newest program of the Lucie Foundation, an organization dedicated to the advocacy of photography worldwide.

How does Fotofund work?
All projects displayed on Fotofund are developed by the project creator. Everything from the overarching concept of the project to the rewards offered are direct products of their creativity. A funding goal and project deadline is set at the time the project is submitted to Fotofund for review. At the end of the campaign, if the project succeeds in reaching its funding goal, all backers’ credit cards are charged. If the project falls short of its goal, no one is charged. Fotofund adheres to an all-or-nothing funding policy.

What types of projects are allowed on Fotofund?
We only accept photo-based creative projects, including mixed media and still and moving images.

Where do backers come from?
Funding primarily comes from fans and friends of the project creator. Word spreads when these fans share the project with their network, and so on. Press and organic social media posts to sites like Facebook and Twitter also contribute to the number of backers who fund a project.

What do backers get in return?
Backers are offered a variety of unique rewards by the project creator, depending on their pledge amount.

What are the fees?
If a project is successfully funded, Fotofund will apply a 4% fee to the funds raised, and PayPal will apply credit card processing fees between 3-5%. If funding isn’t successful, there are no fees.

Who is responsible for completing a project as promised?
Fotofund reviews all project submissions and chooses to display those which show the most promise, but ultimately backers must decide the validity of a project before deciding to fund it.

The project creator is responsible for completing their project as described in the project summary. Fotofund is not involved in the development of the projects and therefore cannot guarantee they will be completed as described.

How can backers best determine whether a project creator will follow through?
Backers can get in touch with a project creator before and after pledging via the “Contact Me” button on the project page, but good questions for backers to consider include:

  • Does the project creator have a clear plan for completing their project?
  • What is their history of completing past projects?
  • Does the creator include links to a personal website that shows work related to the project, or past projects?
  • Does the creator appear in the video?
  • Have they connected via their social networks?

If a backer has additional questions, they can get in touch with the project creator before and after pledging via the “Contact Me” button on the project page.

What should creators do if they’re running into problems completing their project on time?
Creators are expected to keep backers updated on the progress of their project by posting updates directly to their campaign page. If a creator’s project hits a roadblock, being transparent is the best course of action.

If the problems are severe enough that the creator can’t complete their project or fulfill their rewards, creators need to find a resolution. Steps could include offering refunds, detailing exactly how funds were used, and other actions to satisfy backers.

Are project creators legally obligated to fulfill the rewards stated on their campaign page?
Yes. Fotofund’s Terms of Use require creators to fulfill all project rewards or refund any backer whose reward they do not or cannot fulfill. These terms have been specifically crafted to create a legal requirement for creators to follow through on their projects, and to give backers a recourse if they don’t.

Will Fotofund refund backers their money if a project is unable to complete or fulfill?
No. All transactions are between backers and creators only, so Fotofund cannot issue refunds.

Creators receive all funds (minus applicable fees) shortly after their campaign ends, and at this point, they do have the ability to refund backers through PayPal.

How do I start a project?
Just click “Start A Project” in the top left corner of the website header to begin creating your project. You can find tips on developing your project in our Fotofund Workshop section and refer to our guidelines to make sure your project idea is a good fit for the Fotofund platform.

Do you have another question that wasn’t answered here?
Please visit our Contact page.