Bookshlf Launches New Monetization Program For Creators

Curators on the platform will now be eligible to monetize via tips from the Bookshlf community 

Bookshlf, the digital content platform built on curation, today introduces a new revenue stream for content curators, the emerging creator class it has uniquely empowered since its March 2020 launch. Bookshlf is a first-of-its-kind website and free iOS app for organizing, curating, and sharing content via digital Shelves. It enables users to build personalized collections of media based on their expertise and passions. Bookshlf’s new monetization program, building upon recent innovations in the creator economy, allows content curators to monetize their knowledge and taste via tips from the Bookshlf community. Bookshlf has also partnered with nonprofits to facilitate fundraising through the monetization program, including 501CTHREE, which deploys solutions for energy, food, water and shelter.

Bookshlf previously raised $500K in pre-seed funding from CAIVIS Acquisition Corp., co-founded by former Apple CEO John Sculley, Dalton Partners, Cambridge Way Ventures and David A. Steinberg, the founder and CEO of Zeta Global. It has seen 10x user growth since December 2020.

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“Facing an overwhelming amount of content and an overreliance on compromised social media platforms, we launched Bookshlf for a more meaningful and intentional digital media experience,” said Bookshlf CEO and co-founder Mike Abend. “We wanted to express a side of the content world that didn’t exist elsewhere based on unique taste and expertise, and we quickly developed a cult following of users who didn’t fit into traditional social media – content curators. We’re excited to empower this new form of content creation.”

Described as a “Medium meets Pinterest” and an “Instagram for articles,” Bookshlf has differentiated itself from other social media, content and news platforms.

  • People vs. Algorithms: Social media networks and news aggregators rely on algorithms to recommend content, which often prioritize clicks and emotional response. Bookshlf instead empowers a community of curators (mainly professionals, lifelong learners, and subject matter experts) to feature content that they find uniquely valuable, sharing and contextualizing content with their own perspective. These curators include, among others, Kate Gunderson (leading engineer in the aerospace industry), Sarah Wassberg Johnson (food historian and writer) and Rachel Nuwer (author of “POACHED,” contributor for The New York Times and National Geographic).

  • Any Media Format: Bookshlf allows content curators to feature any media format (articles, videos, podcasts, playlists, books, and more).

  • Organization & Curation: Social media platforms have built their experience around ephemeral feeds, making it difficult to find specific posts and perpetuating a recency bias. Bookshlf was instead designed to organize and easily access evergreen posts on distinct Shelves across various categories, such as: Career, Work & Entrepreneurship; Women in Space; Beautiful Essays about Nature; Black Feminist Theory; and Asian American Food History.

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Bookshlf is piloting its monetization program with 50 members of its curator community. Digital creators (authors, journalists, podcasters, content creators, academics, artists, musicians and more) can apply to join the monetization program, and their Bookshlf activity will be reviewed by the editorial team for quality, originality and thoughtfulness. Posts from curators that are opted into the program will feature a “tip jar” to allow tips of $1, $2, $5 or $10.

“I’m excited for Bookshlf as a monetization vehicle because of my deep reverence for innovation. As a professor that researches and teaches about entrepreneurship, I’ve seen what a thriving creator economy can do for individuals and regions. Monetization on Bookshlf will empower and reward thoughtful, informed discourse,” said Bookshlf content curator Ted Hayduk, PhD, NYU Assistant Professor of Economics and Entrepreneurship.

Bookshlf is also partnering with a variety of charitable organizations, starting with 501CTHREE, which will curate content that informs the public about water scarcity, climate change, and other issues. Through tipping, the Bookshlf community can seamlessly support their cause. “501CTHREE is excited to be a launch partner for Bookshlf’s monetization program. We’re deeply connected to the communities we serve and will share their stories as a meaningful way to drive action, create momentum, and build a better future,” noted Drew Fitzgerald, 501CTHREE co-founder.

Bookshlf co-founders Mike Abend, Justin Cadelago, and Andrew Boggs have decades of combined experience in media and influencer marketing, having held senior-level positions at Group Nine Media, Studio71 and Zeta Global.

“Digital creators, and frankly anyone with subject matter expertise or passions, no longer have to rely on brand deals to monetize,” said Cadelago. “We want Bookshlf to become a complementary, passive revenue stream by simply sharing content with your community.”