Kickstarter refuses to email backers of a zombie to tell them it's a zombie, but will email to lie about it going right on ahead



  • I don't know all the details of this kickstarter, but apparently the guy running it already took the money and ran. Some other interested party has been trying to get Kickstarter to send out an email to all backers telling them so, but they refused (saying they "can't" do it.)

    Then there's a copyright dispute of some kind (on the dead zombie project) and Kickstarter not only does send an email to all backers, but in that email suggests the project is all 100% legit and going forward with the rewards.

    Now interested party has to handle dozens of emails from people asking if the project is back live again after all.

    Maybe someone more familiar with this goblins can fill in details, but it sounds like a huge WTF on Kickstarter's end.


  • BINNED

    So... I'm gathering that this blog was written by one of the project leaders? And his partner screwed him and the project? And Kickstarter is aware of this?

    From the info I can gather I call WTF on Kickstarter as well.

    Also, slight offtopic but still a WTF:

    Yup. With that level of quality displayed, I'd be the first one to back your project guys.



  • From the thing you linked to, supposedly from kickstarter:

    The law requires that we remove the project from public view until the dispute is resolved (please see our Copyright Policy and Trademark Policy for more info). Because the project already ended successfully, your pledge hasn’t been affected. The creator should still be able to move forward with the project (and send any unfulfilled rewards).
    That isn't saying that they are totally going forward. It is saying "we had to take it down for reasons, but those reasons don't stop them" which is a **very** different thing. Some people probably will read it as totally going forward, but that isn't really kickstarter's fault there.

  • SockDev

    huh.... that's some messed up CSS

    (Chrome x64 no extensions on Windows 8.1)

    and with a bit of fiddling with devtools so i can read that.....

    wow..... kickstarter fail there.

    yep. Kickstarter you should be ashamed for acting like that.



  • @Onyx said:

    And Kickstarter is aware of this?

    I think it's safe to say the LEFT HAND of Kickstarter is aware of this.

    The RIGHT HAND has no fucking clue.


  • SockDev

    @locallunatic said:

    That isn't saying that they are totally going forward. It is saying "we had to take it down for reasons, but those reasons don't stop them" which is a very different thing. Some people probably will read it as totally going forward, but that isn't really kickstarter's fault there.

    Except they're saying the creator can move forward, when they already know the creator actually took the money and ran. So they basically lied to all the backers.


  • BINNED

    @locallunatic said:

    Some people probably will read it as totally going forward, but that isn't really kickstarter's fault there.

    They sent a fully automated blanket statement about the project they had to manually remove from the listing due to legal reasons. Meaning there was some process in place with paperwork and stuff, yes?

    So there were legal teams involved, presumably, yes? They must've spent more than 2 minutes on this thing. Verifying legalese, contacting people, all that shit.

    Was changing the email that much extra work?


  • area_deu

    A creator on the run is certainly moving forward quickly in some direction, though.



  • @RaceProUK said:

    Except they're saying the creator can move forward, when they already know the creator actually took the money and ran.

    I don't believe that Kickstarter has any method of confirming that. Without some kind of official confirmation there is all kinds of legal issues with being able to say so.

    @Onyx said:

    Was changing the email that much extra work?

    Depends on how the legal stuff for setting up a project is set up. Changing creators on a project is a tricky business due to the possibility of a duo splitting up part way through a project. Which do you give access to? Strictly maintaining the founder seems like the most reasonable approach here.


  • BINNED

    @locallunatic said:

    Depends on how the legal stuff for setting up a project is set up. Changing creators on a project is a tricky business due to the possibility of a duo splitting up part way through a project. Which do you give access to? Strictly maintaining the founder seems like the most reasonable approach here.

    What? Who was talking about that? The whole problem was them saying "oh, yeah, the project is probably fine guys, you should be getting your stuff any minute now" despite being aware that the whole thing is probably doomed.


  • SockDev

    @locallunatic said:

    I don't believe that Kickstarter has any method of confirming that. Without some kind of official confirmation there is all kinds of legal issues with being able to say so.

    They've been informed though:

    Kickstarter is vastly informed with the current situation. They KNOW that Richard (the creator) stole the money and ran. They KNOW that he is not making G:AR under any circumstances.

    And yet they told 3000 backers that all is fine, and they will get what they paid for, despite being thoroughly informed the project is dead.



  • Apologies, thought you were talking about the complaint wanting to change contact info not updating the standard legal action email (which is standardized for legal reasons so probably still can't be changed, just slightly different justification).



  • @RaceProUK said:

    And yet they told 3000 backers that all is fine, and they will get what they paid for

    They didn't. As I first pointed out they said in the standard copyright action email that they had to take the listing down, but that doing so doesn't prevent the project from moving forward.


  • SockDev

    OK, they didn't technically say that. But how many people do you think would read

    The creator should still be able to move forward with the project (and send any unfulfilled rewards).

    and think "I'm gonna get my stuff!"? I'm willing to bet it's a large percentage of that 3000.



  • The surprising thing is, wouldn't they have some kind of CRM-like system to keep track of campaigns?

    And wouldn't that CRM system have a "this campaign is most likely dead" flag they could have flipped when the person who wrote that blog emailed them about it the first time?

    And wouldn't they check the CRM entry for this specific campaign before that email went out?

    Like... is there any actual corraling of information at all at Kickstarter? Because the above steps sound like BASIC SHIT.



  • So how would you phrase it in a standardized email then? This has to apply to projects that are likely to be dead (like this one) as well as those that are fighting/negotiating on those grounds. Yes, some people are going to read things in that aren't said there but I don't know how you could phrase it differently.


  • SockDev

    @blakeyrat said:

    The surprising thing is, wouldn't they have some kind of CRM-like system to keep track of campaigns?

    You'd hope, but I've never launched a project on Kickstarter, so I can't say for sure.
    @locallunatic said:
    So how would you phrase it in a standardized email then?

    I wouldn't have sent that e-mail at all. The project's dead; the only e-mails that should be sent at this point are 'this project's dead' and maybe 'this project's creator decided not to be a total thieving shit after all, and actually fulfil his promises'.



  • @RaceProUK said:

    I wouldn't have sent that e-mail at all.

    So just make the project disappear then? This was cause it got delisted. I totally agree that some will misread things, but I think having a standard process for delisting projects and a standard notification about it makes perfect sense.

    Maybe blakey's idea of having a probably dead flag and changing some things makes sense, but that leads you into the one part of a duo says the other took a runner. Do you believe them? What steps do you use to verify that they weren't given the boot and trying to smear the other (or any of the other possibilities)?

    It's not a simple problem when you look at it from the general case vs. this specific one (not that I know anything other than what was in the post linked to in the OP).


  • SockDev

    No, it's not a simple problem. But it's one that can be mitigated, and means it's far less likely for Kickstarter to effectively lie to thousands of backers.



  • If Kickstarter doesn't already have a "this dude took the money and run" button, then... WHY NOT!? It's happened like a thousand times.


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