Internet's Version of Fundraising
Crowdfunding is the practice of persuading people to fund a project by donating to it. It is a form of crowdsourcing and has become very popular in recent years due to the internet. In 2015, $34 billion were raised by crowdfunding.
Before the invention of the internet, crowdfunding was done through mail-order subscriptions and benefit events. Books were published through a similar system for centuries. Books were advertised and if enough people showed interest in buying them then they were published. The only difference between this method and crowdfunding is that money was not involved until after the books were published.