Depending upon how you look at it, the last week has either been a great Kickstarter week for Judie and me, or it was a very bad one. I saw one project, and I was interested enough to back it. I emailed the link to Judie, and she backed it, too. The next day I got an email from her that had as its subject “I backed”; I looked, I backed, and… more money spent on Kickstarter.
The next day I saw that a project I had previously backed, one that had been successfully funded, was suddenly closing down with the promise of money returned. The project creatives were rather cryptic in their explanation about what went wrong, and fellow backers were angry enough to express it on the Kickstarter site? That was a disappointment.
Every day it seems we get a barrage of emails from projects we have backed that, now that funding is complete, are all at some stage of “In Process” as they move toward manufacturing and shipping. Thankfully there have been many more of these positive experiences than disappointments, and it got us thinking: Why not share each and every project we back here on the site? We could invite all of you add your thoughts and experiences if you to decide to back the project as wel.
Which is why we are starting a section of Gear Diary called “Kickstart This”.
If you are not familiar with Kickstarter, it is
an online threshold pledge system for funding creative projects. Kickstarter has funded a diverse array of endeavors,ranging from indie film and music to journalism and food-related projects. One of a new set of fundraising platforms dubbed “crowdfunding”, Kickstarter facilitates gathering monetary resources from the general public, a model which circumvents many traditional avenues of investment. Project owners choose a deadline and a target minimum of funds to raise. If the chosen target is not gathered by the deadline, no funds are collected (this is known as a provision point mechanism). Wikipedia
That’s the Wikipedia explanation of what Kickstarter is. Here’s mine. Kickstarter is
a great way to see what creative people are dreaming up and help support them as they move from concept to final product. The “product” may be something in the form of consumer hardware, a software app, or another type of creative artistry. Regardless, Kickstarter lets people like us get involved on the ground level. [Oh, and Kickstarter "is"… yet another way to spend a ton of money.]
In all seriousness, Kickstarter is a great way to see the next generation of products and services and be part of the process. As time passes there have been, and will continue to be, more and more amazing projects to back.
So here is the format that Kickstart This posts will take, along with an open invitation to any creatives who have projects on Kickstarter (or coming to it) that are seeking backers. In order to make Kickstart This posts as easy to use and as helpful as possible, we will use a standard format on each post, and then collect all of them on a new Kickstart This page. Here’s what they will look like:
Status: (In Progress/Funded/Not Funded)
Closing Date for Funding:
URL of the Project: Find it here. image from the Kickstarter project page
From the Creatives: (A description from the Kickstarter project page)
Who From Gear Diary is Backing It:
At What Level Did We Back:
Why We Backed It: image from the Kickstarter project page
How Has Communication From the Creatives Been?:
Additional Comments on the Experience: Would You Recommend?:
And once the project is completed and the product received, we’ll review the item and add a link to the review in the original Kickstart This post. In addition, if YOU back a project and would like to share it with others, you can simply send us your Kickstart This information (in the same format laid out above), and we will share it.
We hope you find this a helpful way to discover new Kickstart projects, and in the process you might consider backing some great projects too! We’ve really enjoyed the Kickstarter process thus far, and as Kickstarter matures as a project launchpad we want to help you, our readers, as well as the dreamers who are bringing their ideas to it.
So get ready for a steady flow of Kickstart This posts as we ry to work our way through projects we have previously backed (we’ll go from the most recent to the earliest, so you can also jump in on some of the open projects).
And if you are one of the Creatives looking for funding on Kickstarter, email us directly at firstname.lastname@example.org with the words “Please consider my Kickstarter project” in the subject. We’ll work with you from there and, if we decide to back, help you get the exposure you want/need.