Is Kickstarter a scam?

Posted by Magnetic_dud Sunday, April 15, 2012 6:04:00 PM Categories: Internet

Short answer: no, even if they don't send you anything.

Long answer: Kickstarter is a crowdsourcing website where some inventors can find investors to launch their idea. How does it work?

Who has an idea writes a project, calculates how much time and money needs, makes a prototype and an interesting video to promote it.

If you like that idea you can contribute with your hard-earned money, if the project becomes propular and reaches the objective in some time, it will be financed, otherwise the money will be given back automatically.

To thank investors, every project has some "donation tiers", for example they can say "I will send the final product to anyone who will donate more than $200".

Happens that people can be confused and think that it works like Amazon, that the product is almost ready for production (if it is, why asking money for research&develop?) and ready to be shipped. Instead the product is in name only, and it needs money to be realized. If you pay, you are not buying the product, but you are helping the inventor to finance the project. (And then, as with all investments, you will be compensated in some way, for example by getting the prototype in previe at discounted price, or something else)

Let's do an example:

The ZionEyez, and HD camcorder integrated in a pair of glasses. The production should have started in october, instead in april they are still trying to solve a problem with cable wear, and the electronics is up in the air.

The buyers investors got very angry, for example, I take this comment from a fellow citizen of mine:

is this ZionEyez Team of Naples?
ready to line up me to an eventual one class action against this group in swindle odor greet all the swindled ones, I think that I will lose mine 300€ [...]

Besides the awful English "made in Google", is he really serious to ask for a class action? For $300? Who will pay the lawyers? In a recent case about a security breach, the 11 victims got a $1925 compensation, but the lawyers got millions ($600k + $2mil).