Remember Pomplamoose? They’re the musical duo who’ve built a large audience on YouTube through a mixture of cover versions of pop hits and their own material. Now the band’s Jack Conte is launching a service called Patreon to help their peers build sustainable careers from their YouTube fame. The name hints at its focus on a patronage-style model: people sign up to support specific artists, pledging to give a set amount of money ($1, $5 etc) for every video that they upload, and get rewards including access to exclusive material, Google Hangouts and so on. Like Kickstarter, but supporting people rather than projects. “I just feel like there’s something broken there and there should be a way that someone with 10,000 readers or viewers can be making more money and make a living on what they’re doing,” Conte tells the O Music Awards blog. “The idea is basically that content is free and we almost have to act as if recorded media isn’t around anymore. Before recorded media was around, how did artists make money? They had these wealthy patrons — the Medici family and Pope Julius. I feel like it can still work that way.”

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