February 11, 2012
Simply put, while current SEC regulations prohibit this, I think it is incumbent upon the SEC, given the recent successes in crowd-funding shown by companies such as Kickstarter and the like, to develop a set of rules to allow pre-seed or micro-angel investments in a company in exchange for micro-shares of equity in that same company -- i.e. a democratization of the angel process.
Why shouldn't those with capital (though perhaps less than $1000.00) be allowed to place very early stage investments of a small amount in a company they feel can be viable, if aware of the potential loss? These investments, yes, are highly risky - but it can be the thing that allows that one great idea to move from the beginning point to even the early stages of execution. And that, indeed, is something that SEC regulations shouldn't be prohibiting.
I do not feel this would need to be a traded market, but perhaps via a process that a company could manage for other start-ups (see: Kickstarter.com, etc.). I for one, would enjoy the opportunity to support those great ideas that may never see the light of day, and would hate to see regulation preventing this process from happening.