I used to like Kickstarter. I even blogged about it before. But I think it has declined into something that is bad for innovation. You see, like other projects, my Kickstarter project was declined. Now, you may be thinking, well it happens, maybe your project didn't fit the guidelines. That isn't the case. Here's the story:
I spent quite a few weeks putting together the pitch for my project. Followed all the guidelines. To be honest, I thought of their process as a contract. You follow the rules, etc, we will post your project, that simple and we get a percentage of what you collect.
Well it didn't turn out that way.
They basically say that the project doesn't fit into their "focus" and isn't a "best fit" for Kickstarter. Not that it violated any of their guidelines.
So now, Kickstarter has turned into basically a Venture Capitalist of sorts. A Kickstarter staff member gets to decide if he thinks your project is worthy. Only then can you have the project posted. Crazy isn't it?
This has really turned me off to Kickstarter and I won't be supporting any more projects on the site. You can call it sour grapes or whatever you want, but I don't think Kickstarter is or should be the authority on what is a good project. They are a platform to enable you to reach friends, followers, and possibly other interested people in your project. But they are afraid, very afraid. This is probably why they aren't going to be approving many crowd funding projects in the future.
Also, now that I spent a good deal of time and effort to massage my proposal into their Kickstarter system, shouldn't I be able to charge Kickstarter for my effort? I'm not an attorney, but to me this seems like a breach of contract and non-payment for that contract. I signed up with Kickstarter to both contribute and get my projects funded. I started the project and expected that I would be compenstated for my work, by having my project go live and be able to get some exposure for my time. I followed their guidelines to a 'T' and spent all this time and effort only to be told sorry, your project isn't in Kickstarter's vision.
They should kill the category and not let me think that my project has a chance, since it seems that they are doing this because of legal reasons.
They will probably take down the preview link, but it is here and I will soon have it available on another website using the selfstarter.us code base.
So, to all my friends, if you use Kickstarter to try and fund your projects, I won't be contributing any help through their system.
Here's the declined emails.
Friday Jan 25, 8:19am PST
Thanks for taking the time to write to us again. We took another look at the project after your message and, although we appreciate the hard work you've put into this project, it is unfortunately not the best fit for Kickstarter. This isn't a judgment on the quality of the project, but rather a reflection of our focus.
We wish you the best as you continue to pursue this endeavor, and we hope you continue to be part of the Kickstarter community.
Thursday Jan 24, 2:46pm PST
I would like to appeal this. I'm not sure why you would reject this. It is a great piece of software for your iPhone and iPad and includes a great piece of hardware.
You approved other projects which are very similar including, "OUYA", Parallella: A Supercomputer For Everyone, Twine, Transporter, CloudFTP just to name a few.
All of these projects are similar and provide you with hardware and some software to access them. You've even approved a NAS device before.
Thursday Jan 24, 2:02pm PST
Thanks for taking the time to share you project with us, but this project is not a good fit for Kickstarter.
Technology is a category with unique challenges and not all projects fall within our focus. We know building a project and submitting it for review is a lot of work, and we're sorry to have bad news to report.
We appreciate you taking the time to check out Kickstarter, and we hope you'll consider us again.
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