There's also the Fixed (same as kickstarter) and flexible (project gets funds even if goal is not reached) funding models. I don't really like the idea of the later especially as indiegogo takes 9% cut if project does not reach it's goal.
Thanks for pointing that out. Whats the point of having a goal, and if its not reached, they get the funds anyway? kind of silly...
Indiegogo is not "same as kickstarter" or an "international version of kickstarter".
Indiegogo is to kickstarter as Your World
is to WoW. This is why they have "flexible funding" - because COs were asking for it. If people were fully rational, it would have been impossible to get a single pledge for a flexible funding campaign.
Kickstarter is project-oriented. The site is built to attract pledges. The mechanism is geared for people who want to do something but lack the starting funds: "give me money to buy a laser cutter and I'll cut something awesome for each one of you". So if the cutter costs $5000 but the campaign collects only $2000, the cutter isn't getting bought (after all, if the creator had the remaining $3000, he should have asked for $2000).
But viral crowdfunding in general and Kickstarter in particular are highly attractive. So people started putting projects there as a means of advertising, asking not for the money they need to kickstart production (which is frequently $0) but simply the money they want to get from the campaign, as a psychological tool of dubious effectiveness*. Sometimes those projects fail and creators regret they cannot get the pledges they got - because they can actually deliver what they promised with less money.
*On one hand, you'd think people might be less incentivized to pledge to projects that met their goals - on the other hand, there's seriously a class of people who pledge only after the goal is met. On the third hand (I have three hands), reaching your (substantial) goal faster can get you to the promo pages. So the goal should be higher than the bare minimum, but not too high to discourage the last-chancers and slow the % progress.
Indiegogo is extremely campaign-organizer-oriented. The main page of Indiegogo is built exclusively to attract COs - especially COs that are pissed at Kickstarter (pay my bills folks, charity drives, COs who think they should be given money solely for their promotional efforts regardless of the goals). They really do not give a flying gentle caress about the success of your campaign.
The most important difference is that on Indiegogo MONEY GETS TAKEN IMMEDIATELY. I can't allcaps this enough. This is the reason for their internationality: Kickstarter's pledge mechanism is based on Amazon Payments' subscription system, and Amazon Payments is US-only. Paypal is more "international", but it takes your money right away.
Then, if the project was set to "fixed funding" and the funding fails, you get your money back, MINUS THE FEES.
If the project was set to "flexible funding", you do NOTget your money back AT ALL. So if you're donating to a "flexible funding" with a, say, $20000 goal, and they get only $2000, it's obvious that the project won't be moving forward in any fashion, and your money is LOST. Neither Indiegogo nor the project creator are obliged to return it. Gone is gone. You clicked a button to fund someone's dream, and look, they are X bucks closer to the dream. Sucker.
Kickstarter projects have this peculiar trait when there's an influx of pledges once the goal is reached. This is purely psychological. On the other hand, with flexible funding on Indiegogo, you are highly incentivized to only donate once the goal is met, unless the project is effectively a sales offer (e.g. "I will paint you a picture for $200").