Yelp documentary-in-the-making Billion Dollar Bully met its Kickstarter funding goal on Friday after generating a fair amount of exposure in the media, most notably with a back-and-forth between filmmaker Kaylie Milliken and Yelp VP of Corporate Communications Shannon Eis on CNBC.
So far, the film has raised over $64,000 from 534 backers, and continues to seek additional funding to cover graphic art, marketing, principal photography, and contract wok.
The film was already about half shot before the Kickstarter campaign launched, but Milliken is seeking additional stories from business owners about their Yelp experiences, and has set up a new point of contact to get them. A post on the production company's blog says:
The support for this project so far has been amazing. This topic has effected so many people, and we have been getting emails from so many wanting to tell us their story. This kind of response lets us truly realize the impact that we can have by bringing this story to life.
We have setup a new email address to send all your stories too. This will help us gather your stories, and make sure that we don’t miss hearing what you have to say.
Please send your stories to firstname.lastname@example.org
Considering how frequently businesses claim to have their own stories in the comment sections of our own coverage of Yelp, I'm guessing the inbox will be flooded.
An update on the Kickstarter page made over the weekend promises the creation of new rewards for stretch goals.
"Window stickers and t-shirts have been requested by several people, so we will be incorporating that," it says. "We are just so thrilled at the way this project has taken off! It really wouldn't be happening without the support from all of you."
It remains to be seen whether or not Billion Dollar Bully will be able to show us any hard hitting evidence to back up the claims many people have made, but if nothing else, it will give these people a new format to share their stories beyond random Internet comments.
Milliken has said she hasn't been able to get Yelp to agree to go on camera for the film, but that she hopes they do. Yelp continues to point to a Harvard Business School study, the dismissal of lawsuits, and a recently concluded FTC investigation, which it says debunks the claims at hand. The documentary will be exploring these things, according to Milliken. Yelp says she has a conflict of interest.
Image via YouTube