Politicians do it, as well as business entrepreneurs. That is, raising money for causes necessary for the public good.
Getting money from citizens and/or powerful and unpowerful special interests has been part of the fabric for the American way of life for years. Even some book authors have looked to pre-fund their books through "pledges" for their print efforts.
Which makes me ask: How about a TV show? (Stay with me. This is brilliant).
Why not have TV producers raise money from prospective TV viewers. You want the next (make that better) "Lost" or "Heroes"? Maybe you want to be an investor. The best part:: if successful at this new financial model, you won't have count on advertising, Netflix, iTunes, or Video on Demand. And no make-goods.
Are you in? If you are, I'm guessing you'll be watching.
One key TV programming category perfect for this: daytime soaps. Soon ABC soap operas will be getting revived online -- and we wait to see whether viewers will come. If they don't, those fans -- really fanatics -- should go out and buy a piece of a departing afternoon show.
TV can be an engagement tool. Nothing says that more than motivated TV viewers willing -- sans complaining on Twitter or Facebook - to buy a piece of a TV show, with the unbelievable risk of losing it all.
Moaners will cry when shows like NBC's "Chuck" finally goes off the air. But would they put up to shut up? We all know economic times are tight -- not just for TV consumers -- but struggling TV producers.
Sure, TV entertainment is your right! Now you can take some responsibility -- directly -- not through monthly cable, satellite, or telco fees. Forget that mortgage on the house, your kids tuition, that special Friday date night dinner. Buy a TV show -- or maybe a small piece of it.If nothing else all this will get you closer to the Hollywood action you want most -- feeling what dozens upon dozens of despondent TV producers feel virtually all the time.