Saturday, February 28, 2009

Join your own Open Source-style pro cycling team #cycling

Not such a new idea for pro cycling fans as is made out on the Crowdriders site, but a good idea nonetheless that (admittedly) takes the fan-as-owner idea a step further than before, where the crowd will (in theory) manage the pro cycling team as well as provide sponsorship (or capital, if you prefer). That should be interesting - 40,000 people voting on what to do with the cash raised! Basically if enough people get together and raise enough money they'll sign up riders and start a UCI-registered team. It's certainly not impossible, but others have tried to crowd-source and failed. Especially tricky will be getting the management side right - balancing the "democracy" that is promised for the crowd against the professional management and governance that is required. What if the majority want to do something crazy, or risky, or just sub-optimal? What if the guy starting this idea off is not the best guy to run the show yet remains at the epicentre just because he, umm, started it? Who will tell him that he's just one voice and what will he do - change the rules? I guess that will be explored in the fullness of time.

For a previous take on a subscription-based sponsorship of a cycling team, check out David McKenzie and iTeamNova