Amazon Shuts Down Service For LGBT Crowdfunding Site

Screen Shot 2013-02-22 at 4.13.45 PMA Kickstarter-like crowdfunding site aimed at the LGBT community was effectively shut down on Wednesday when Amazon Payments informed the owners it wouldn’t process funds submitted to the site

Adam Kotkin, CEO Apps Genius Corps, says he went to Amazon for an explanation but got contradictory and inaccurate explanations. In a press release he explained:

In one email, Amazon Payments said the GetGayFunded application had been denied. But that’s not true as our application was approved in December 2012 and the site had been fully functional with projects receiving their funding through Amazon Payments.

Another rationalization said we were rejected because we claimed 501c3 status, but nowhere in any of our documentation had we claimed that because it’s simply not true and their phone rep agreed.

Yet another email from Amazon Payments said they aren’t currently accepting crowdfunding projects. Again, we were accepted last December and my other crowdfunding site with Amazon Payments,, is still up and functioning perfectly as are several other crowdfunding sites processed through Amazon Payments. The only difference between the two sites is that one is focused on the LGBT community and the other on animal welfare.

Ironically Kotkin has now been forced to go to another crowdfunding site, IndieGoGo, for partners to help process donations. But for now, $7,000 in donations—made to, among other causes, help Vieques Pride, provide jerseys for a gay rugby team, and cover funeral expenses for someone’s mother—are in limbo.

“These people worked hard to fund projects on my site,” says Kotkin. “I don’t care if we never work with Amazon again and I don’t care about our lost fees, but these projects deserve to have their funds released.”

You can help get back on its feet by donating to its official IndieGoGo page.

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  • hephaestion

    Crowdfunding? WTF is that?

  • Storm

    It’s like internet panhandling. “I got an idea, but I got no money. Hey, buddy, can you spare a dime?”

  • 2eo

    @Storm: Aww bless, the internet man tried to make a jokez aboutz da netz. How witty.

  • niles

    It really is a form of begging, but call it what you will.

  • Tom_D

    Do we really need a gay crowd sourcing website? Why can’t we just use the sites that are already available?

  • jeff4justice

    Why use any crowd funding website? They’re just a needless middle man sucking up the money a fundraiser earns.

    Why not use your own free website on a site like WordPress or Wix and collect 100% of the funds? It may take a bit more work but you can find fundraiser thermometer apps to update your supporters on your progress.

    Unless a person scores media attention or has a built in audience (like a nonprofit, church, or public figure with an audience), one is unlikely to get thousands using IndieGogo or Kickstarter. Crowd funding takes a lot of work.

  • hyhybt

    @jeff4justice: Well, some people find it more trustworthy that if the full amount needed isn’t collected then they get back their portion.

  • Rainbow Campaign

    @jeff4justice: Good point, an argument that we’re sure to run into as a platform ourselves and a decision that each campaigner must make. But, like you said “crowdfunding takes a lot of work” and we believe it’s the responsibility of the platform to promote its own brand by gaining “media attention and building an audience”, which is why there’s a strong argument for niche crowdfunding platforms like LGBT Crowdfunding by Rainbow Campaign (

  • Rainbow Campaign

    @Tom_D: Good point, but I think the answer lies in niche crowdfunding site, which outperform the more general platforms. Also, there are specific projects and campaigns that the general crowdfunding sites may not support or encourage or just don’t understand. Moreover, these niche crowdfunding sites attract a more concentrated mix of funders that sympathize and also benefit by taking part in niche crowdfunding sites. We’re taking the baton from here, LGBT Crowdfunding has a new home, Rainbow Campaign (

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