The crowd funding website Kickstarter has jump started the development of a number of hardware and software projects in the past year, including products such as the the upcoming Android-based $99 game console Ouya and the Pebble eWatch. Many of these projects, including a number of PC games, have generated millions of dollars via Kickstarter backers.
Now, the site's organizers are making some changes to make sure that the people who fund the projects, along with the projects themselves, have a better understanding of what being hosted on Kickstarter actually means. In a blog post today, Kickstarter said:
It's hard to know how many people feel like they're shopping at a store when they're backing projects on Kickstarter, but we want to make sure that it's no one. Today we're introducing a number of changes to reinforce that Kickstarter isn’t a store — it’s a new way for creators and audiences to work together to make things.
One of the changes will require that all Kickstarter projects display their answer to the question, "What are the risks and challenges this project faces, and what qualifies you to overcome them?”. This is supposed to give any potential Kickstarter backers a better idea about if the people behind a project can actually pull it off.
In addition, Hardware and Product Design Kickstarter projects can no longer show project simulations or renderings, saying, "Products should be presented as they are. Over-promising leads to higher expectations for backers. The best rule of thumb: under-promise and over-deliver." Finally, Hardware and Product Design projects on the site cannot offer multiple quantities of a reward, saying, "The development of new products can be especially complex for creators and offering multiple quantities feels premature, and can imply that products are shrink-wrapped and ready to ship."
Source: Kickstarter website | Image via Kickstarter