This is either a stroke of genius or the downfall of Western civilization: Dodge has just announced a plan to allow crowdsourced purchases of its Dart compact sedan though funding website Kickstarter.
If you’re familiar with bridal gift registries and how they work, you know the basic concept. Here, someone says “I want a Dodge Dart for my birthday,” then Kickstarter sends out gift requests to the sender’s contact list. If you have enough friends, you can probably fund the car in its entirety; if you don’t, we assume the money donated will go towards lowering the purchase price of the car.
For Dodge, this is pure marketing genius. Even if no one takes advantage of the scheme, it gives the automaker something to talk about, while drawing attention to its slow-selling Dart.
On the other hand, it pretty much torpedoes the idea of working hard for what you want. Saving money towards a goal is hard, but asking friends and family to give you money for that same goal is a lot easier. Plus, when someone else is buying you a car, you have plenty of disposable cash for beer, pizza and live music, which is way more important than putting money aside to buy a car.
Is it genius, or just one more indication that our values have completely fallen in the toilet? You decide.