In October of 2013 the CRA issued a response to a taxpayer regarding the nature of crowdfunding receipts from a tax perspective.

depending on the facts and circumstances of a specific situation, monies received by a taxpayer under a crowdfunding arrangement could represent a loan, capital contribution, gift, income, or a combination thereof.  However, since the terms and conditions of these types of arrangements may vary greatly from one situation to another, the CRA would not be able to make any determination on the income tax consequences of a particular crowdfunding arrangement without a full review of all the facts, circumstances and documentation, if any, relating to that arrangement.  This could only be done on a case-by-case basis.

In other words the tax department understands that context is critical. Crowdfunding is clearly used as a source of funds – and if the recipient is a business, the proceeds may be taxable.