I’ve sure everyone active in the Kickstarter community already knows this, but just to lay it out for the comics crowd, the massive crowdfunding site just announced a MAJOR overhaul of their rules: there are now far fewer of them, and many projects that were previously banned are now not. Still no charities, and a couple other things but there are only three guidelines now:
Projects must create something to share with others.
Projects must be honest and clearly presented.
Projects cannot fundraise for charity, offer financial incentives, or involve prohibited items.
KS also now has two paths to going live: you can go through a Community Manager who will help you with your project, as they always did, or just hit Launch Now, and go frictionless. The Launch Now feature has some algorithms in place that will check to see whether your campaign is road worthy, but otherwise press and pay.
The Verge has more analysis of the move, saying they were made to compete more with Indiegogo, which is kind of anything goes, and allows more kinds of projects, although Kickstarter still has a higher funding rate.
If the history of the company were divided into eras, Strickler would say there are roughly four. The first would be 2002 to 2009, Before Kickstarter, when Strickler and his co-founders Perry Chen and Charles Adler were dreaming up the site. The second would be 2009 to March of 2012, Before Double Fine — the first “blockbuster” project that collected more than $3 million for a video game and raised expectations for funding levels. The next would be After Double Fine, which saw the famous “Kickstarter is not a store” blog post and a number of multimillion-dollar projects.
This would be a new one, Strickler says. We’ll call it the Mature Era. The site is “the premier place” for crowdfunded projects, Strickler says, and the company boasts a brand recognition and community of repeat backers not found on other sites. Even though Indiegogo has surpassed it in size, Kickstarter’s campaigns are much more likely to meet their goals and have raised more money total.
So yep, there will soon be more and more things for you to spend money on. OF course there will always be people who pretend to be honest and aren’t…so the human factor will still come into play time and again.
Heidi MacDonald is the founder and editor in chief of The Beat. In the past, she worked for Disney, DC Comics, Fox and Publishers Weekly. She can be heard regularly on the More To Come Podcast. She likes coffee, cats and noble struggle.