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YouTube Will Take 5%-Plus Cut of Crowdfunding Donations

Google’s YouTube now lets creators solicit fans for donations — providing another tool for monetizing content — with the video site taking at least 5% of any coinage dropped into the virtual tip jar.

YouTube’s “Fan Funding” feature, currently available in the U.S., Australia, Japan and Mexico, is “a new way to make voluntary payments to support the YouTube creators that you love,” according to a post on the Google support website.

The fan-funding feature, which YouTube announced earlier this summer at the VidCon, requires users to have a Google Wallet account.

YouTube “takes a small fee to cover the cost of processing the transaction,” the company says. The includes a baseline fixed fee (of 21 cents in the U.S., with similar pricing in the other countries), plus 5% of the total amount contributed.

Over all, YouTube’s 5%-plus fees are lower than rates charged by popular crowdfunding platforms. Kickstarter levies a 5% fee on successfully funded projects and tacks on an additional 3%-5% from Amazon.com for credit-card processing fees. Indiegogo takes 4% of total funding for successful projects (and 9% for those that fail to reach their funding goal) and adds 3%-5% for credit-card or PayPal processing.

Currently, the YouTube Fan Funding feature is supported in PC web browsers and in the YouTube Android app (version 5.7 or later).

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