Crowdspirit is a project to systematize end-user involvement in the whole value chain of Crowdsourcing
"What blogs, citizen journalism and YouTube have done for media, CrowdSpirit hopes to do for product development. The Scottish-French venture's focus is on harnessing the power of crowds to allow inventors and adaptors to take their products to market. By involving end-users in every aspect of a product's life-cycle, CrowdSpirit aims to set off a crowdsourced manufacturing revolution.
How it works: inventors submit ideas for innovative new products and contributors submit problems for inventors to work on. Members vote, define a product's specifications, and can invest money to finance development. After a first prototype has been created, selected members test and help fine-tune in cooperation with manufacturers. Once the stage of product development has been completed, contributors continue to be involved, for example by acting as a product's ambassador and promoting it to retailers, or by providing product support, like translating instruction manuals.
CrowdSpirit's primary focal point is electronics with a market price below EUR 150 / USD 190. If all goes well, this will be followed by more expensive electronics, and other sectors as the concept develops. A selection of inventions will be launched in parallel, so that the community can work on several projects at the same time.
What remains to be seen, is how customer-manufacturers will be rewarded for their efforts. CrowdSpirit clearly states that contributors give up all intellectual property rights when they submit an idea or product, or when they help define a product. As trendwatching.com points out in its briefing about the customer-made trend (a.k.a. co-creation), "as co-creators get smarter and realise how much they're worth, expect kick-backs for co-created goods and services to go up. If you don't pay a fair share, talented members of the global brain will take their business elsewhere." (http://www.springwise.com/style_design/customermanufactured/)
Check the entry on Crowdsourcing
Five-part explanation of the initiative at http://www.openbusiness.cc/2007/01/26/discover-a-crowdsourcing-initiative-crowdspirit-part-v/