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Internet eats up silly potato-salad Kickstarter

A crowdfunding campaign for making a potato salad incites Kickstarter insanity, raking in $9,000 over its $10 funding goal.

Potato-salad Kickstarter
This should be the world's most expensive potato salad. Screenshot by Amanda Kooser/CNET

A few short days ago, Zack Danger Brown entrusted Kickstarter with his dream of crowdfunding a potato salad. He had a modest $10 goal and a vague concept of cooking up his very first potato salad. He offered to say funders' names out loud while he made the dish for a mere $1 pledge. He invited funders to come watch the experiment and stand in the kitchen with him for a lowly $10.

Brown KOed his original funding goal and is already up over $9,000. According to Kicktraq, he's trending toward nearly $54,000 by the time the madness is all over. Yes, the Internet has gone crazy for a condiment-laced side dish.

Brown has been pouring out stretch goals, like $1,000 for doing a live-stream of the creation process and $3,000 for renting out a party hall and inviting the entire online world to come to a potato-salad party (so long as they pledge $10 or more, they can even hang out in the kitchen). "The internet loves potato salad! Let's show them that potato salad loves the internet!!" Brown writes on his Kickstarter page.

Brown has some huge challenges ahead to deliver on his pledge promises. One of the main offers is saying the names of the funders while he makes the potato salad. With 25 days to go, he already has over 1,300 backers. That's going to be one long cooking session, though he can probably use the time it takes for the potatoes to cool to get through a good chunk of those names.

Potato-salad backers have been enthusiastically suggesting new stretch goals, ranging from hiring cheerleaders for the kitchen to launching a global potato-salad website hub to creating a documentary on the dish. "I think future stretch goals will revolve around a bigger and bigger potato-salad party," Brown tells CNET. He envisions a Potato Salad Fest with live music as a benefit for hunger awareness.

"This is the first kickstarter project i've ever backed. This is important to me on a deep and spiritual level," backer Christopher Rolf Wolforth writes. Others have shared family memories: "For me potato salad is more than a dish, it's a connection. Feelings of love, joy, family, and friends," writes backer VaporStarter.

On many levels, the success is inexplicable, but something has managed to draw a disparate crowd to fund this project. "Potato salad is just a vehicle that brought us all together," Brown told Crave. "We're all craving interaction and feeling like we're a part of something bigger. Potato salad isn't controversial, it isn't mean or snarky. Potato salad is lawful good -- something incorruptible that we can all rally around."

It's a bit of magic, a bit of mayo, and a whole lot of Internet silliness coming together for a perfect potato-salad storm.