Inspired by the Kony 2012 fad, a group of New York University grad students has set up the wartime version of Kickstarter, where random people can bankroll new weapons and new paramilitary missions. Among the offerings: an all-seeing drone armed with “a new kind of explosive” promising to cut down on civilian casualties, or a bus packed with a rolling “enhanced interrogation” center.
Just one thing, and it’s a spoiler alert: The site, Kickstriker, is an obvious hoax — one meant to get you thinking about how a world of crowdfunded warfare might not be so far away.
“Polemically, that’s really interesting,” says Clay Shirky, the NYU professor and internet theorist, out of whose communications tech class the idea was born, “but that’s actually a thing that could happen, given that there are these guns for hire. What would it take to create a crowdsourced hire of [mercenaries]?”