While a good portion of us here in the states spent last week in a collective food coma, Australian zoologist, Adam Britton, launched a crowdfunding campaign to continue research on one of Paul Hogan’s lesser-known adversaries – the pygmy crocodile. 

In a first for donation-based crowdfunding, the creator of a Kickstarter campaign has been ordered by a state court to pay civil penalties, restitution, and court costs for failing to deliver products to his contributors. Edward J. Polchlopek, aka Ed Nash, and his company, Altius Management, have been ordered to pay a total of $54,851.29 for failure to deliver decks of ‘retro-horror themed’ playing cards. 

Earlier this month whistleblowing platform, WikiLeaks, announced the launch of a new crowdfunding campaign to gain more information on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP). The campaign, launched on August 11, is designed to raise funds to offer whistleblowers a reward for any information about the impending trade, which has been negotiated in almost complete secrecy despite its global implications. To date, the campaign has raised $86,693.47 from 2,441 people, 79 percent of the $109,700 goal.

Target – the slightly more upscale Wal-Mart – has agreed to pay thousands of Visa card issuers up to $67 million after their colossal December 2013 data breach that exposed around 40 million credit and debit cards. The settlement comes after the rejection of a proposed $19 million deal with MasterCard due to a lack of support from its issuers.

The nation’s largest privately held company, Cargill, has agreed to purchase Norwegian-based EWOS, one of the world's largest suppliers of feed and nutrition for farmed fish. The $1.5 billion deal signals Cargill’s entry into salmon and trout markets and is the company’s second aquaculture deal in the past two months after it announced a $30 million shrimp feed facility project in Equador with Naturisa. 

What was once the most popular Android manufacture in the world, HTC’s market price has now fallen below the value of its own cash reserves of roughly $1.4 billion. According to Calvin Huang of Sinopac Financial Holdings Co. in Taipei, “HTC’s cash is the only asset of value to shareholders. Most of the other assets shouldn’t be considered in their valuation because there’s more write-offs to come and the brand has no value.”

At this point, you can crowdfund just about anything. Campaigns to raise funds for medical bills, student loans, movies, new inventions, and startup capital have sprung up from all over the world, which led the crowdfunding industry to generate $16.2 billion globally last year in funding transactions. A new trend is emerging within the industry – platforms designed solely for litigation crowdfunding.