It hasn’t been easy! We started working on the database, digitizing, fundraising, and systems in 2003. It took three years to get to the Beta release. We accomplished it with the extraordinary creative vision, advice, help and dedication of dozens of people. We were vastly undercapitalized, so even though we were among the first to start on streaming video, we couldn’t afford to move nearly as quickly as YouTube, Google Video, and others with tens of millions of dollars for their start-up. We were able to raise a small amount of start-up money from family, friends, small foundations, and the Illinois Arts Council. We weren’t anywhere near the scale of the commercial world. But, we have unique content – some 6,000 independently produced videos – most of which is not found anywhere else. Since that early period, we have seen support from many generous sources, but the most significant has been the Gaylord and Dorothy Donnnelley Foundation. Without their support, none of this would have been possible.
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