Curastory aims to help NCAA student-athletes earn money off the field

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Crowdfunded video platform Curastory is one of several firms poised to capitalize as the NCAA works toward allowing student-athletes to earn money from their names, images and likenesses.

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Founded by former ESPN data scientist Tiffany Kelly, Curastory recently gained NCAA approval as an acceptable monetization platform for student-athletes, Sport Techie reported. The platform connects college athletes and other celebrities with companies that are looking for a well-known name to boost through brands.

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Curastory charges a processing fee for its services, with athletes earning the rest of the money. And unlike a traditional endorsement deal or commercial appearance, athletes are able to monetize posts they would have created anyway.

“So if you have a video talking about your pregame meditation routine, multiple brands can sponsor that, like Calm,” Kelly told Sport Techie. “As opposed to making an influencer post for Calm, it’s natural. You don’t mention Calm, other than audio and logo attribution between breaks, and Calm’s logo just so happens to be on the video.”

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Curastory has been a hit on WeFunder, the startup crowdfunding platform. The company has raised more than $155,000 to date from 400 backers, according to the website.

The NCAA said last fall it would begin to allow student-athletes to earn money from their names, images and likenesses, reversing its long-standing opposition to compensation. College officials had long argued that allowing athletes to earn money would be unfair to other students, unbalance the recruiting process and harm the integrity of amateurism in collegiate sports.

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Officials caved to pressure from various states, including California that passed laws allowing students to earn money from endorsements.

In April, the NCAA’s board of governors recommended rule changes that would allow student-athletes to earn money from endorsements as well as “compensation for other student-athlete opportunities, such as social media, businesses they have started and personal appearances.”

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