Are there alternatives to Patreon?

Services provided by Patreon

Patreon is an intermediary between content creators and consumers (“Patrons”). The value-added functions provided by Patreon are:

  1. Payment processing and management (subscription / per creation).
  2. VAT handling.
  3. Low fees for micropayments (through payment aggregation).
  4. Content hosting and access regulation.
  5. Social networking.

Patreon has recently announced changes to their fee structure which will make it significantly more expensive to support a large number of creators with small amounts, effectively eliminating the third point. For further information, read this discussion on Reddit, this blog post or head over to Twitter to witness the shitstorm. There’s also an interesting theory that financial regulations might be the true reason why Patreon suddenly shot themselves in the foot .

Patreon alternatives

The only alternative providing all of the 5 functions listed above appears to be Drip (by Kickstarter). However, Drip is currently “invite-only” and not yet open to all creators.

All other alternatives I found may fulfill some of the functions, but not all of them. Nevertheless, they often charge higher fees than Patreon.

Snowdrift.coop maintains an excellent overview of crowdfunding and fundraising services  (there are several lists on that page, be sure to scroll all the way down). However, many of them won’t solve the micropayment problem (notable exceptions are Flattr and Liberapay).

You could also have a look at marketplaces for digital goods, particularly if your supporters expect to get something in return for their payments. Here are two lists to get you started:
12 Platforms to Sell Digital Downloads
Sell Product Online

The majority of creators I used to support on Patreon offer direct donations through PayPal or via bank transfer. Obviously, this only satisfies the first point on my list, but it might still be an acceptable solution to many small donors who removed their pledges on Patreon in protest against the new fee structure.

Updates (chronological order):

Java: Missing key codes on non-US keyboards

Java does not seem to have key codes for several keys on non-US keyboards. This does not prevent the typed characters from being recognized, but it makes it impossible for the Robot class to simulate pressing these keys.

Examples of missing key codes

On a standard French AZERTY keyboard, 2 keys result in a key code of 0 (unknown key code): The key above the tab which generates the character “²” and the much more important ù% key.

On a German QWERTY keyboard, the ß?\ key and the äÄ,öÖ and üÜ keys are undefined.

You can confirm this using the Java KeyEventDemo:
Percentage key on AZERTY keyboard

Workaround

Use the Alt Numpad input method.