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Consumer protection lawsuit against Kickstarted project

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Kickstarter in the Ass

Kickstarter is a brilliant premise. Creative people can pitch an idea and get money from a variety of sponsors, thus funding a project that otherwise wouldn’t come to fruition. There are fantastic examples of its success. Unfortunately, there are also huge failures. Now, one company is being taken to court.

The State of Washington has filed a lawsuit against the company behind Asylum Playing Cards project. The project was funded on 1 November 2012 and raised $10k more than their original $15k goal.

Project backers were promised the playing cards and other rewards with an estimated delivery date of December 2012. To date, the project has not been completed and none of the backers have received any of the promised items or any refunds. Additionally, the company has not communicated with its backers since July 2013.

Kickstarting projects has risks – backers sign on knowing that they might not get exactly what they were expecting, or there may be delays, or the quality might not be up to their standards. However, non-delivery goes against the terms of use. While Kickstarter isn’t liable for these issues, the companies that crowd source the funding are. As a result, Washington State is well within their rights to file this lawsuit, and it could set an important precedent for future crowd funding initiatives.

This has been a concern of mine for a while. There are tons of really cool Kickstarter ideas out there, plenty which I have considered backing. However, I’m always worried that the end product won’t actually be the thing that I wanted and was willing to pay for. Will this make companies more hesitant to Kickstart project? Who knows. However, it might be a good thing if they are actually held to proposed delivery dates. It would be great if Kickstarter helped companies with project management – I don’t think developers always know how they will deliver on the project proposed, leading to delays and budgetary issues. Either way, the concept may be excellent, but it’s time for it to mature and get tweaked to ensure better end results.

Last Updated: May 5, 2014


  1. Alien Emperor Trevor

    May 5, 2014 at 12:09

    Good. If they don’t deliver on their promises then this is exactly what they deserve.

    Kickstarter is really no different to preordering a game when it comes to quality, enjoyment, whatever. You don’t really know what you’re going to get.


  2. InsanityFlea

    May 5, 2014 at 12:10

    It was bound to happen. I’d love it if people could throw money into my project. “The dangers of eating pizza and drinking beer while playing online games lifetime research project” All backers can get a live webcast.


  3. Wincethis

    May 5, 2014 at 12:10

    Mmm, Facebook.


  4. Admiral Chief in Space

    May 5, 2014 at 12:14

    Lazy filthy hobbitses stealing the precious


    • HvR - THE Average GAmer

      May 5, 2014 at 12:17

      must trick hobbitses to steal the other precious


      • Dutch Matrix

        May 5, 2014 at 12:22

        Oy! Come on! Let us not make fun of fat people?


        • Kensei Seraph, Sparkly Samurai

          May 5, 2014 at 12:26

          Hobits aren’t fat, they’re not big-boned either.


        • InsanityFlea

          May 5, 2014 at 12:49

          • Dutch Matrix

            May 5, 2014 at 13:13

            We are however, allowed to make fun of stupid people…

  5. Brady miaau

    May 5, 2014 at 17:07

    I know enough about product development, getting something to market on time, what they need, marketed and all that to know that I cannot do it alone and that it it a very, very difficult thing to do.

    I think perhaps a good idea does not always a product make. Chris Roberts, for example, had me a little bit worried. He is a creative genius, but delivering a game and having a good idea are not the same thing. glad I seem to be wrong with that one.

    But my new Tex Murphy is still not out, perhaps out on Wednesday. I say again: this is not an easy thing to do and I think many people under estimate how difficult it is.


  6. Johan du Preez

    May 6, 2014 at 11:09

    Kickstarter like everything you have to do research or know the market really well. When you buy stocks you wont just go and get any stocks without doing proper research otherwise you lose your money.

    Star Citrizen
    Elite Dangerous
    Wasteland 2

    There is allot of great kickstarter game but dont toss your money at anything that looks cool from an unknown team.


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