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The Suspect Pricing of the Obama Design Book

The design director of the Obama campaign, Scott Thomas, has collaborated with some of his artists to create a book called “Designing Obama” that will tell the story of how the team managed to translate the now-President’s grassroots support into an elegant, effectual visual language.

Oddly, however, Thomas has decided to self-publish the 360-page book, and is collecting funding for the project on KickStarter, a site that lets projects use microfinance to capitalize their budgets. Thomas told the Washington Post in September that he elected to self-publish to maintain his own vision of the book. But the real impetus behind the KickStarter project might simply be profit: Thomas’ somewhat dubious “pay what you like” sales proposition smacks of a donation, even though his group is presumably for-profit. Called an “Obama-like fundraising model” by Thomas, the sale hierarchy offers various levels of book add-ons for payments up to $150. The book itself is $50.

So far the project has earned $38,000 from over 600 supporters. The book needs $65,000 for publishing to begin.

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