Planet Money's crowdfunded T-shirt project surpasses goal by more than $200,000

Kickstarter | | Baratunde Thurston

Donors to Planet Money's crowdfunded project to report out the life of a T-shirt have contributed more than five times the amount of cash the program hoped to raise in a Kickstarter campaign. In its pledge, the program says it will:

...Meet the people who grow the cotton, spin the yarn, and cut and sew the fabric. We'll ride on the cargo ships that bring our t-shirt from factories in Bangladesh and Colombia to ports in the US. And we'll examine the crazy tangle of international regulations which govern the t-shirt trade the whole way.

With eight days to go, the NPR show's campaign has raised more than a quarter-million dollars, far beyond the $50,000 goal it set at the project's outset. Donors who pledge $25 will receive a T-shirt, which features a squirrel holding a cocktail.

Planet Money contributing editor Alex Blumberg told's Andrew Lapin that any money raised in excess of the original goal would go "toward a 'news reporting boot camp' to bring station reporters to NPR headquarters in Washington, D.C., where they will learn tricks of economics reporting from the Planet Money team."

Quite a few journalistic endeavors have had success with crowdfunding:

Baratunde Thurston is making an online series about crowdfunding. Here's Funded's "sizzle reel":

  • Andrew Beaujon

    Andrew Beaujon reported on the media for Poynter from 2012 to 2015. He was previously arts editor at and managing editor of Washington City Paper. He's the author of the 2006 book "Body Piercing Saved My Life," about Christian rock and evangelical Christian culture.


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