For the past year or so many online creators have been popping up with Ko-fi links as a way to support them and their work. Let’s takes a closer look at Ko-fi, how it works, and how to get started.
What is Ko-fi?
Ko-fi is essentially an online tip jar for online creators. Fans can “buy their favorite artist a coffee” in increments of around $3 as a way to provide financial support if they like their work.
Do they actually receive coffee?
No. The coffee is metaphorical and a cute way of thinking about support.
Where does the money go?
The money gets sent to the creator’s Paypal account and from there it is up to them to decide what to do with it. Some creators will create financial goals to reach to fund a certain project (such as materials for a cosplay) but not all do. In my case it would be mixed in with the money I made from selling second-hand costumes, transferred from Paypal to my bank account, and then used to keep the cosplay circle going.
Does Ko-fi take a cut of the tip?
No, though from my research it looks like Paypal still does. According to their FAQ Ko-fi has their own tip account that is used to fund the site. [Edit: they do take a bit of the membership fee from the newly introduced Ko-fi Gold]
What do I get in return?
Sincere thanks and appreciation? Unlike Patreon, supporters do not receive any sort of pledge rewards- it is a tip jar not a subscription service. Some creators may create a personal reward system, though this is the exception rather than the norm. [Edit: the new Ko-fi Gold does allow for supporter content and monthly payments].
What if I don’t have the money to contribute?
That is 1000% okay! No one should feel obligated to donate, you should take care of your personal needs first. If you want to support an online creator there are many ways to do so without money involved, such as sharing/retweeting their work, engaging on their content, and watching through the ads on their videos.
I want to make a Ko-fi for my own cosplay page, how do I do it?
Honestly making a Ko-fi is surprisingly easy. All you need is an email address that is connected to a Paypal account. Just follow the step-by-step instructions and you’ll be all set.
I hope this cleared up any questions you may have about the Ko-fi platform and you found this helpful if you are considering Ko-fi for your own cosplay endeavors. If you would like to tip this page, my link can be found here: ko-fi.com/koumorinohimecosplay
(The information above it not officially endorsed by Ko-fi and may contain human errors. Contact Ko-fi directly for more details.)