Need For This Policy
The advent of crowdfunding permits artists - including authors, anthologists, and publishers - to be able to create their art without focusing on mass marketing strategies. This is a net good, but requires ethical guidelines in order to avoid exploitation of authors, editors, and other publishing industry professionals.
Model of Crowdfunding
Alliteration Ink will preferentially utilize crowdfunding for raising production costs for a project. This is to minimize ethical conflicts and maximize the focus on creating excellent work. In such instances where a call for submissions occurs after the successful completion of a crowdfunding project, the creation of the best possible work shall be the determinant for submission acceptance.
Alliteration Ink will not use headliner names or "attached authors" to advertise a crowdfunded project without having reasonable assurances that such author's work will actually appear in the project.
Call For Submission
Calls for submission shall include the following features:
- A clearly stated minimum "funded" payrate and what payrate there will be if the project exceeds its funding goal.
- A clearly stated list of what options will be considered if the project does not successfully fund. These may include (but are not limited to):
- Possible further attempts at funding - including number of attempts and possible change of platform
- Alternate funding mechanisms (e.g. changing to a royalty-only basis)
- Alternate pay rates
Contracts and Payments
- Contracts will be preferentially executed after the completed crowdfunding campaign.
- Author payments will be completed as soon as possible after the successful completion of the campaign.
- Should a contract be required prior to the successful completion of the crowdfunding campaign, it will include clauses specifying all of the following:
- The payment is upon publication or within 30 days of the successful funding of the crowdfunding campaign, whichever comes first.
- There is a contingency option if the crowdfunding fails which the author either agrees on beforehand or has an option to withdraw penalty-free from the contract at that time.
- There is a strong Publish-By Or Revert clause where all rights revert to the author if the story is not published by a set date.
The author's primary obligation to the anthology is the story.
The anthologist or publisher organizing the crowdfunding campaign may ask contributors to offer additional backer rewards.
Alliteration Ink will respect all contributors equally, regardless of the number or type of backer reward offered by the contributor.
The scope of any backer reward, as well as the responsibilities of the entity offering the reward, must be clearly defined prior to the crowdfunding campaign. This will be accomplished in a written document or contract with the following features:
- Who is involved (organizer, author)
- That the backer reward is contingent upon the successful completion of the crowdfunding campaign
- A clear explanation of the Reward
- A timetable of delivery/fulfillment of the Reward
- Any costs or reimbursement involved, as needed
- That the offering of the Reward is independent of the contract for the story in the anthology
- Any critiques offered as backer rewards will be fulfilled after any open call for submissions to avoid conflicts of interest.
While both appreciated and accepted, contributors to an anthology are not required or expected to back an in-progress campaign financially.
There will be no preferential treatment toward current or future submissions based upon whether the submitter has backed a crowdfunded project. Executing or inciting such quid pro quo behavior is strictly forbidden.
In such instances that an open call occurs after the successful completion of a crowdfunding campaign, the submissions editor(s) will not have access to the lists of backers, nor will the organizer of the campaign have access to the lists of submitters.
Should a submitter refer to their level of backing of the crowdfunding campaign in the submission, cover letter, or correspondence with the submission editor(s) prior to story acceptance or rejection, the submission will be summarily rejected.
Attribution, Prior Versions, Licensing
- This document is released under the MIT license
- Comments, including suggested revisions and inclusions to this policy, are welcome