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Crowdsourcing involves a large number of people online contributing something - votes, ideas or most commonly money - towards a specific cause: it could be scientific or genealogical research; for charity; or to help fund a commercial project. Watch our five-minute video to make sure you're not lost on the subject of crowdsourcing.

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What is crowdsourcing?

Crowdsourcing is the practice of obtaining information or input into a task or project by enlisting the services of a large number of paid or unpaid people via the internet.

All manner of tasks are open to being crowdsourced, and there are numerous examples of crowdsourcing that you may not identify as such.

It could start with something as simple as posting a question or poll on social media, trying to get a hashtag trending, or asking a forum to help solve a problem.

Fundraising and crowdfunding, meanwhile, are examples of crowdsourcing financial contributions.

For more information on the associated risks and online safety tips for parents and carers, watch our explainer video, available to those with a National Online Safety membership.