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    • Hey all! To those of you who are familiar with Yuval Harari, and to all who love adventure travel and culture: please help me beat an algorithm!

      Here's the deal. I have recently launched a campaign for my upcoming book, Tales from South America, on IndieGoGo:

      Although my book campaign seems to be off to a great start, thanks to all the supporters, IndieGoGo just wouldn't feature it in their marketplace. Why? Because their algorithm decided my campaign wasn't getting enough activity!

      I was puzzled at first: the campaign got shared hundreds if not thousands of times, I got to over 60% funded within the next week... What was going on?

      The answer is ridiculously simple. All the shares, comments, and support came from external sources like Facebook, Instagram and websites as opposed to IndieGoGo's own share tools! What this means is that IndieGoGo tracks activity only if the shares are being done using IndieGoGo's share tools. Basically, if you do a Facebook or Cake post and just paste the link to my campaign, Indie will NOT count this as a share!

      I have always wondered why was it that some very mediocre (at best) campaigns were being featured on Indie's homepage, marketplace, and newsletters. Why?! Their content wasn't great, they weren't getting funded, yet IndieGoGo featured them.

      Well now I know. Yuval Harari is spot on: algorithms already dictate a lot of our choices and decisions, especially online. So now that I know it's an algorithm, not content, problem, I would love to conduct and experiment and see it I can beat it!

      Want to join the challenge?

      Here's where I need your help. Please go to my campaign page and share it using IndieGoGo's share/link buttons. If enough people do this, it might persuade the algorithm that my campaign is gaining traction, and to feature it in their marketplace and newsletters!

      Better yet, if you have a second, please also leave a comment - this will boost the activity in the eyes (wait, AI bots have eyes?!! :D..) of the algorithm.

      The link to the campaign is HERE.

      If you're unsure whether you should help me or not and if you'd like to sample the book first, you can download the first chapter here:

      Thank you so much, and let's kick some algorithm ass!!! :D

    • I spent some time on the site, filled out my profile, left a comment, tried to share, and looked around to see if I could figure out the algorithm. It reminds me of our experience with Product Hunt when we were posting about Cake there earlier this year. They both look polished, they're both respected, but I had trouble figuring them out. It was very hard to make heads or tails of what is featured on Indiegogo, at least it seemed that way to me.

      However, I found this fantastic book of photography about tigers!! Gonna back that.

    • Haha, that's cool!

      IndieGoGo's algorithm is interesting; I suppose it's a little like Google's SEO algorithm, just not as sophisticated. Google's bots can already comprehend content quite well while IndieGoGo's one seems to be a bit simple still, merely tracking shares and activity on its own site.

      And the funny thing is, I found all about it on some obscure crowdfunding podcast, not on Indie's site - you'd think they'd want campaigners to know this stuff so that they could make more money?..

      Thanks so much for all the help!!

    • Don't they usually usea tracking cookie to identify the source of a link? I haven't researched Indigogo, but it'd be pathetic if they didn't havea way to track shares that leave their domain. You just would need to encourage people to share the whole link, and not strip the cookie.