Companies that pay for your passion

The Internet has long been an incubator for brilliant ideas where entire industries have been revolutionized. With celebrities receiving overwhelming support for their passion projects, major companies are trying to capture some of that buzz by launching campaigns to give creative minds the capital to have their dreams come to life.

American Express #PassionProject 

Every new promotion has a hashtag these days. Here it make sense, since American Express is looking to generate social media excitement through a newly-launched YouTube channel that lets users to upload a video detailing the projects that are close to their hearts. Until the end of the year, American Express will select ten winners to receive a $2,000 award that will help them start their passion projects. To get the YouTube channel off the ground, American Express has enlisted Scott Harrison, founder of charity: water, and Rebecca Lando, the author of The Working Class Foodies, to create the first videos on the channel — showcasing how their projects changed the game.

Scion Motivate

We don’t usually associate car companies with entrepreneurial contests, but Scion stepped up with an offer that young idealists couldn’t afford to pass up. In March, the company invited 50 entrepreneurs to Los Angles for its Motivate event. Ten winners took home one year of professional mentoring, $10,000 t0 go to the project and a brand-new Scion. Not a bad first company car.

Among the projects funded: a hiking gear company, a theater company specializing in oversized masks and a Nashville music company that provides youth musicians free access to instruments.

Pepsi Refresh Project

Back before the crowdfunding boom took off, way back in 2010, Pepsi set out to fund thousands of projects by allowing people to vote online for the best ideas. Coke drinkers might not have noticed the massive advertising effort Pepsi put forth, and despite the company canning the project, it was successful in funding a number of green initiatives – proving that soda isn’t all that bad for you.

Follow Chris Longo on Twitter @east_coastbias



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

Ex-Bitcoin official to plead guilty to Silk Road…

Bitcoin entrepreneur Charlie Shrem has reached a plea deal to resolve U.S. charges that he engaged in a scheme to sell over $1 million of…

International

China's army changes tactics to prepare for war…

Chinese President Xi Jinping has said China will spur military innovation and called on the army to create a new strategy for "information warfare" as…

National

California passes 'yes-means-yes' campus sexual assault bill

Californian lawmakers passed a law on Thursday requiring universities to adopt "affirmative consent" language in their definitions of consensual sex, part of a nationwide drive to curb sexual assault on…

National

Syrian refugees top 3 million, half of all…

By Stephanie NebehayGENEVA (Reuters) - Three million Syrian refugees will have registered in neighboring countries as of Friday, but many remain trapped by the advance…

Going Out

'Friends' coffeehouse Central Perk coming to NYC —…

"Friends" is coming back for a one-off special: "The One with the Free Coffee." Warner Bros. is bringing a pop-up replica of Central Perk, the…

Movies

Interview: 'As Above, So Below' directors: 5 ways…

The fraternal directors of the found footage horror "As Above, So Below" dish on the best ways to frighten the bejesus out of audiences.

Movies

Criterion's new Jacques Demy box mixes the light…

Jacques Demy, the most effervescent of French New Wave filmmakers, gets a Criterion box all to himself, with classics like "The Umbrellas of Cherbourg."

Entertainment

Comedian Joan Rivers, 81, rushed to New York…

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Acerbic comedian and fashion critic Joan Rivers was rushed to Mount Sinai Hospital in New York on Thursday after she reportedly…

NFL

3 things we learned in the Giants preseason…

The final score didn’t matter — a 16-13 win by the Giants — but it would’ve been nice to finally see Big Blue’s new-look offense get on track.

NFL

NFL Power Rankings: Seahawks, Broncos, Patriots, 49ers start…

NFL Power Rankings: Seahawks, Broncos, Patriots start at top

U.S. Soccer

5 facts about new England captain Wayne Rooney

Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney was named as the new England captain by coach Roy Hodgson on Thursday.

NFL

Jets vs. Eagles: 3 things to watch

A win on Thursday night at the Eagles would give the Jets a 3-1 record and just their second winning preseason under head coach Rex Ryan.

Style

Trend: White hot on the 2014 Emmy's red…

White was one of the big trends on the Emmy's red carpet.

Food

Recipe: Samuel Adams beer-marinated grilled shrimp

Summer calls for two things: a cold beer and light food. Sam Adams' Latitude 48 IPA fairly bursts with citrus notes, making it an ideal marinade…

Wellbeing

4 healthy ingredient swaps to make your meals…

When it comes to eating well, everyone knows they could be doing better. But cooking in an apartment on a busy schedule is a recipe…

Wellbeing

Heart trumps brain when it comes to movies…

When you need a good cry, do you reach for the movie that’s “based on a true story”? Science says you’re giving your brain far…