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View Full Version : The End of Kickstarter?



Shadow Lord
March 28th, 2014, 10:27 AM
Okay, I'll admit I have backed projects on KS. Three to be exact. One was the LSL remake and that has come through and I got what I paid for. The other two seem to be just in limbo posting delay after delay on delivery. Okay we are talking about amateurs here so things like this are expected. But what about the Oculus acquisition? Is this going to be the beginning of the end for KS?

I did not back that one, although I thought about it. A ton of people gave 2.4 million dollars to get this company going and all they are going to have to show for it is "this lousy t-shirt" for all intents and purposes. Yet, a select group of people (the developers) are now insanely rich. Is this fair? Legally, yes it is fair and morally I can see arguments on both sides but I'd say yes it is still fair.

But will this effect how people view crowd sourced funding? I.e. will you be less likely to give to a project that may be the next billion dollar idea if all they are going to give you is a t-shirt instead of equity? I know I will think about it and if enough people do too I believe KS will die and be replaced by the new breed of crowd sourced funding where equity is part of the deal.

barythrin
March 28th, 2014, 12:34 PM
I personally doubt equity will become a practical solution. Too much diversifying for too many people could destroy a company too, but the larger point in my mind is kickstarter shouldn't be a place for companies. In my opinion it was a place for individuals who have created something to get the money and backing to produce samples then a product to sell afterwards.

To me it's sort of how south by southwest here is pointless and lost all meaning. It used to be a place for amateur bands to get heard and get signed. Now it's just a bunch of already signed bands showing off for a price noone can afford. Could just be my misunderstanding though.

Unknown_K
March 28th, 2014, 04:15 PM
The whole point was to donate money (small amounts from many people) to get a project off the ground that would normally never see funding. It was never supposed to be (legally it can't) an investment, just a donation. There are plenty of computer games funded from it (sequels to old classics that none of the major companies want to continue funding). The best you can do is get a freebe with the final finished product you have to buy.

deathshadow
March 29th, 2014, 12:07 AM
I think what a lot of people miss on this is the meaning of the word "donate"... some people are under the delusion KS is about "investing" -- which is about as valid a mode of thinking as when a auto salesman tries to talk you into buying undercoating to "protect your investment"

Where brand new cars are NOT an investment, they're an expense. Donating is NOT an investment.

Shadow Lord
March 29th, 2014, 06:50 AM
I agree with what everyone is saying in regards to KS and what it is now (i.e. you donate to get something off the ground and get a lousy t-shirt). My point was in regards to the future. The rules are changing and soon there possibly will be a whole set of new crowd funding sites that are cleared by the SEC to sell equity and not just t-shirts.

Some projects, say XT-IDE from our own little community, would do fine on KS. Because it is not a multi-million or billion dollar idea. There is a limited number of people who want one and KS manages a lot of the overhead in terms of legality, money handling, etc. But what about the next killer product (say a vastly improved 3D/VR headset) which will have wide appeal and could generate real revenue? When there is the possibility of having equity if the project is listed on site A and just a lousy t-shirt on site B would you hesitate to support the project because the creators listed on Site B (i.e. it is clear they don't want to share the pay day)?

BTW here is an interesting post (http://www.theverge.com/2014/3/28/5557120/what-if-oculus-rift-kickstarter-backers-had-gotten-equity) on the whole issue.

tingo
April 1st, 2014, 06:07 AM
To answer your question: no, this will not change how people view crowdsourcing (most people anyway). Feel free to quote me on it, ten or twenty years from now.
Kickstarter probably won't die due to the current competition ("the new breed of crowd sourced funding").

People always want to get rich, and some of them will try various legal and not so legal ways to achieve that, the same way that people will take an idea (like Kickstarter or anything else) and change or twist it into what they think it should be.

Nothing new under the sun.

Tiberian Fiend
April 12th, 2014, 09:04 AM
Oculus Rift is only a billion-dollar idea in the same sense that Broadcast.com was: it was an idea they could find someone to trick into buying for a billion dollars.

Shadow Lord
April 12th, 2014, 10:26 AM
Oculus Rift is only a billion-dollar idea in the same sense that Broadcast.com was: it was an idea they could find someone to trick into buying for a billion dollars.

Isn't that the case with most ideas?

cthulhu
April 13th, 2014, 12:56 AM
I think the imminent failure of high-profile Kickstarter funded projects, like Ouya for example, will definitely make people think twice about donating.

Ouya ran a brilliant campaign that generated huge interest and raised more than nine times their goal. How could they possibly fail, right? Well they're currently circling the drain after hardware sales have tanked and their software sales have never been good. They've also broken nearly all of the initial promises they made on Kickstarter and elsewhere. Did I mention that their hardware has several major flaws too? I suppose that helps explain why they are now desperately trying to become a software-only entity. When they finally do go out of business I expect that some of the resulting fallout will negatively affect Kickstarter in some way.

barythrin
April 14th, 2014, 09:06 AM
I think the imminent failure of high-profile Kickstarter funded projects, like Ouya for example, will definitely make people think twice about donating.

I was wondering what happened with them. It seemed cool but then I never really saw much come out of it, and I think the stores sold them for $100 which isn't terrible but for something that one doesn't really know what it can do is a bit steep in my mind. Combined with (at the time) lots of craigslist postings selling them for around $60 (for whatever reason).

cthulhu
April 14th, 2014, 02:40 PM
I was wondering what happened with them. It seemed cool but then I never really saw much come out of it, and I think the stores sold them for $100 which isn't terrible but for something that one doesn't really know what it can do is a bit steep in my mind.

The Ouya was a good idea, poorly executed. Amazon's recently released Fire TV microconsole seems to do everything the Ouya does but better and for a similar price. I can't see Ouya lasting much longer now that a behemoth like Amazon has entered the market, especially since Google appear poised to join them.