Netizens nationwide yesterday raised NT$6.74 million (US$221,000) in three hours on a crowdfunding Web site to pay for advertisements in the New York Times (NYT) and the Chinese-language Apple Daily explaining the opposition to the cross-strait service trade agreement.
The money will be used for a front-page ad in today’s Apple Daily, which will cost about NT$1.5 million, and a full-page ad in the Times’ international edition, which costs US$153,014, according to FlyingV.cc, a Taiwan-based crowdfunding Web site.
The ads will include photographs of the student-led protest that local media have dubbed the “Sunflower Revolution,” and the “Occupy Legislature” movement launched on Monday last week that took over the Legislative Yuan’s chamber the following night, as well as stories by different authors.
The protest has been gathering steam with thousands of students and others taking part in the sit-in outside the legislative compound every day.
An unnamed initiator of the small fundraising plan said the idea was to introduce the student movement and its criticisms of the trade pact to an international audience, so that people overseas could better understand the largest student movement this nation has seen in 20 years.
About 2,400 donors contributed more than NT$5 million within the first two hours after the project was launched, according to Light Lin (林弘全), founder of FlyingV.
Large pledges came in after the announcement of the project and the crush was so great the company’s server crashed at one point, Lin said.
The maximum amount one donor can contribute is NT$50,000, FlyingV said.