Kickstopper

 Pages PREV 1 2 3 4 5 NEXT
 

Aardvaarkman:
Would it help it if I reworded it to more explicitly represent this context? "Let's be honest, some Kickstarter projects will find a way to scam their backers anyway, so there's no real harm done."

Except you're still making the same mistake.

What I say is: People will find a way to cut stuff anyway, so we might as well give them knifes.

What you try to make out of it is: Some people will use the knife wrong, so we should take the knife away from them.

While both statements are true, the one you try to put in my mouth is ridiculous considering nothing illegal or more morally questionable than the usual is going on. It's same old $#!@, just on a new platform.

Aardvaarkman:

What's irrational or extreme about it? Have you ever heard of analogy? That's what I'm using here. I'm not saying that Kickstarter is a criminal enterprise. What I'm saying is the logic that "we can't prevent all of 100% of (X) from happening, so why should we even bother thinking about any single act of (X)" is faulty logic.

Your analogy only works on the presumption that the situation that what we have here is, just like crime, worse than the alternative.

Kickstarter is only harmful, if it increases the potential abilities of the industry to grab our money.

So far, in this thread, there was little proof that this is actually happening, just "bad feelings", and negatively worded descriptions of how unpleasant it feels that movies and games are "held at ransom" (in other words, made possible), or that they are too unoriginal (because they are what the fandoms want).

If the worst thing that you can say about it is that publishers are gonna reap the profits, then you haven't said anything that makes it WORSE than how thigs have been done until now.

Aardvaarkman:

I guess we should just give up on doing anything good, because it's inevitable that things will be corrupted.

Not anything good, but there are certain good ideals that you should just give up simply because they dont work in real life.

You can stop crime. You can stop scams. You can't stop human nature, or simple logic.

You can't stop the fact that in a free market system, corporations are going to be greedy. Because that's the real complaint here, not any specific harm that is being done, but the general feeling that this usiness model sounds unpleasant.

Well, so does business in general.

I find all this very patronizing, condescending even. The entire point of Kickstarter is that people are free to decide what to do with their own money. Nobody's forcing anybody to do anything. If a Kickstarter offers bad rewards that aren't worth it to the targeted fanbase, then guess what... people won't back that particular Kickstarter and it will fail. Wow, what a shocking realization.

A studio that is all ready to start production and tries to do a Kickstarter to get even more money before starting production isn't going to frickin CANCEL production because it fails - that is patently absurd, if a project is profitable it will get made regardless, and if it isn't, it won't. There is no "holding for ransom", the investors/publishers either believe the project will make money, or they don't. That's that.

On the consumer side of it, if I want to pay a THOUSAND dollars to see a movie get made, then pay a THOUSAND more dollars to see it in theatres, then pay a THOUSAND more to get the DVD and a THOUSAND more to get the digital download then guess what?? That's my right to decide to do that with my money, and neither Movie Bob nor anyone is anybody to tell me that I can't.

If I want to cash out my life savings and mail them to Time Warner in a big envelope for their execs to take out and rub their naked bodies with it while they laugh at the poor, again guess what - that's my decision to make. Not yours. You are not the savior or the guardian of other people's money, that role does not fall to you.

So in a nutshell.. stop worrying worrying so much about what other people might or might not do with their money... cause it is, in fact, their money, not yours.

Naqel:
What I say is: People will find a way to cut stuff anyway, so we might as well give them knifes.

What you try to make out of it is: Some people will use the knife wrong, so we should take the knife away from them.

That's an absurd interpretation. What I would say is that we should watch out for the people who knives to stab other people, rather than those who use them to prepare dinner. The big media companies have a history of abusing their power, so, it might be a good idea to keep an eye on how they are using their knives.

Do you think that people who use knives to murder people should not have their knives confiscated and be locked up in prison? Do you think "Oh, they just murdered a few people, let them have their knives?"

Entitled:
You can stop crime. You can stop scams. You can't stop human nature, or simple logic.

Pray tell, how do we stop 100% of crime and scams? People have been trying for millennia, with little success. If you have the solution to crime, why are you holding back? At the minimum, you would be awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

The fact that you say you can stop those but can't stop human nature is rather weird, because crima and scams are pretty much a part of human nature.

You can't stop the fact that in a free market system, corporations are going to be greedy. Because that's the real complaint here, not any specific harm that is being done, but the general feeling that this usiness model sounds unpleasant.

Kickstarter is not a free market system. It is a system entirely controlled by one company. Kickstarter can arbitrarily ban projects on whatever grounds it feels like. If you think "the real complaint" has anything to do with free markets, then you are absolutely wrong.

Anyway, what's wrong with people complaining about business models that sound unpleasant? You were the one who brought up the idea of free markets - if you believe so much in the idea of free markets, then isn't it equally a part of the free market idea that people should have the right to reject, boycott or complain about businesses and business models they don't like?

Aardvaarkman:

Pray tell, how do we stop 100% of crime and scams? People have been trying for millennia, with little success. If you have the solution to crime, why are you holding back? At the minimum, you would be awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

The fact that you say you can stop those but can't stop human nature is rather weird, because crima and scams are pretty much a part of human nature.

Read your own analogy. You were claiming that we should do something about Kickstarters that you don't like, in the same way as we are doing something about crime with laws.

And that only makes sense, because laws ARE stopping crime. Not the general concept of crime, but at least individual acts of crime.

The same doesn't apply to corporate greed. You might try to boycott greedy corporations, but corporations are greedy by their very nature, so you can't stop corporations from being greedy.

The original sentence is true on it's own, and it doesn't mean that we should allow scams to happen, but that there is no point worrying over a business model just because it's "pulling money from people's pockets", before because that's what businesses do.

Aardvaarkman:

Kickstarter is not a free market system. It is a system entirely controlled by one company. Kickstarter can arbitrarily ban projects on whatever grounds it feels like. If you think "the real complaint" has anything to do with free markets, then you are absolutely wrong.

Kickstarter is not a market system period. It's a website owned by a company in a free market system. I was comparing Kickstarter to alternate options.

If there would be a perfectly user-friendly way of funding movies and games, that corporations can't ever use to increase their profits at the expense of the costumer, I would say sure, go ahead, let's ban and boycott and and complain about all other ones. If we would have other tools for cutting things, that can't cut people, then sure, let's ban knives.

But we don't.

Knives are not the worse alternative compared to something else, and that's why we can say that there is "no harm done" by allowing knives.

Aardvaarkman:

Anyway, what's wrong with people complaining about business models that sound unpleasant? You were the one who brought up the idea of free markets - if you believe so much in the idea of free markets, then isn't it equally a part of the free market idea that people should have the right to reject, boycott or complain about businesses and business models they don't like?

Yes and if you believe that we should boycott Snickers bars because they are making people fat, others will point out that "people will eat verious kinds of chocolate and candies anyways, so there is no real harm done".

That is, there is no real harm done by Snickers bars themselves, that you could stop with a boycott.

Just because you can imagine a perfect world where everyone is eating 100% healthy, doesn't mean that we should start getting there by boycotting random symptoms.

If you can imagine world where companies are not tryingto pull as much money from us as they can, good for you, but maybe you should be more worried about the worst examples of that, instead of the latest examples.

I can just see it: In a few years, EA will be putting up kickstarters for their games, then selling those games at full price, and even then they'll still be chocked full of always-online drm and in-game transactions, not to mention plenty of half-assed dlc and online passes for those dirty peasants who buy used. Oh, and they'll still have all the same server problems, even if those lovely kickstarters do manage to pony up enough to meet the mark EA said 'might' help them keep it from happening AGAIN.

The saddest part is, I was trying to be sarcastic there, but I honestly can see EA doing all of that...

I am Harbinger:
I can just see it: In a few years, EA will be putting up kickstarters for their games, then selling those games at full price, and even then they'll still be chocked full of always-online drm and in-game transactions, not to mention plenty of half-assed dlc and online passes for those dirty peasants who buy used. Oh, and they'll still have all the same server problems, even if those lovely kickstarters do manage to pony up enough to meet the mark EA said 'might' help them keep it from happening AGAIN.

The saddest part is, I was trying to be sarcastic there, but I honestly can see EA doing all of that...

I would be more worried about that, if EA would have any respected developers or untainted franchises left that can attract the kind of cult following.

What are they going to put up on Kickstarter? Mass Effect is now hated by its own fans, Dead Space turned to generic shooter mediocrity, Sim City is is practically a swear word...

Sure, their games continue to sell, but they sell on a meh-factor, as shiny empty examples of mainstream genericness that the casual consumer tolerates because they are "not that bad".

So far, most Kickstarter successes were coming from beloved franchises, studios, and artists. Even though Veronica Mars did become a cult classic under Warner, Warner kind of deserves this by the virtue of not alienating away the original producers and desecrating the franchise.

That's something that EA can't tell about itself. All the series from EA that a cult fandom would be interested in Kickstarting, are already Kickstarted by their actual original developers, (whom EA has driven away), as "spiritual successors", while EA is busy profiting from their "mainstream appeal".

That's the most exciting change that I hope from Kickstarter: more focus on what elitist audience fandoms want, instead of trying to appeal to everyone.

Entitled:
Read your own analogy. You were claiming that we should do something about Kickstarters that you don't like, in the same way as we are doing something about crime with laws.

Were did I claim that?

I'm of basically the same opinion as Movie Bob - that this just feels kind of wrong. Not that this Kickstarter should be prohibited, but that maybe we should be wary about it.

And that only makes sense, because laws ARE stopping crime. Not the general concept of crime, but at least individual acts of crime.

No, they really aren't doing that. It's only the enforcement of law that has any hope of stopping crime, and even that isn't particularly effective.

The same doesn't apply to corporate greed. You might try to boycott greedy corporations, but corporations are greedy by their very nature, so you can't stop corporations from being greedy.

We absolutely can place limits of corporate greed. That's why things like anti-monopoly and consumer rights laws exist. As greedy as a company might want to be, consumers still have certain rights. As greedy as they might want to be, there are certain things that they are legally prohibited from doing. Again, see previous reply on how enforcement of those laws is imperfect.

Kickstarter is not a market system period. It's a website owned by a company in a free market system. I was comparing Kickstarter to alternate options.

What makes Kickstarter not a market system? It's absolutely a system with customers and suppliers where money changes hands for products and services. And it's a system in which those suppliers compete for the money of customers. Sounds like a classic market to me, much like eBay or Amazon is.

Markets come in all shapes and sizes. Do you not have a local supermarket? That's probably owned by a single private company, even though it's a literal market.

Knives are not the worse alternative compared to something else, and that's why we can say that there is "no harm done" by allowing knives.

This just doesn't make sense at all. We know that harm is done by knives. People are killed with knives, but we allow them because they are useful, and we try to minimise the harm with law and common-sense.

Yes and if you believe that we should boycott Snickers bars because they are making people fat, others will point out that "people will eat verious kinds of chocolate and candies anyways, so there is no real harm done".

And that would make absolutely no sense, because there is obvious harm being done - obesity does cause death and illness.

Just because you can imagine a perfect world where everyone is eating 100% healthy, doesn't mean that we should start getting there by boycotting random symptoms.

When did I say anything about boycotting Kickstarter or anything along those lines?

If you can imagine world where companies are not tryingto pull as much money from us as they can, good for you, but maybe you should be more worried about the worst examples of that, instead of the latest examples.

Can't I be interested in both? It's not that I'm particularly worried about this - again, like Movie Bob, it's just something that seems to violate the spirit of these things. My arguments were mostly in response to yours and others' very odd counter-arguments that we shouldn't really think about these issues, because, Capitalism or something?

I'm more bothered by the strange logical incoherency of your arguments than I am about this Kickstarter.

Aardvaarkman:

[on snickers bars]: And that would make absolutely no sense, because there is obvious harm being done - obesity does cause death and illness

I think we are getting to the gist of the disagreement with this analogy.

Basically, I, and (I believe Naqel), are starting with the assumption that even if Kickstarter projects like the Veronica Mars one are driven by greed, don't actually INCREASE the harm caused by greedy corporations, and possibly decrease it compared to other shows that are also driven by greed.

In this sense, it's possible something to both be a tool for causing harm, and at the same time, there being no harm caused by allowing it's existence.

Snickers bars can cause obesity, but if in an alternate world with no Snickers bars, people would be just as obese as here (or even more obese because they eat some worse candy instead), then we can also say that there is "no harm done" by allowing Snickers bars to exist. (there would be other ways to combat obesity, but that would require a much larger scale perspective than just grumbling about a specific chocolate brand).

This is not the same with crime. If we (either legally or morally) discourage murder, or theft, or scams, or monopolies, and this leads to less death and financial ruin and poverty, then allowing them would be actively causing harm.

I think even when used by corporations, Kickstarter is a beneficial force, that has only one disadventage compared to the traditional model, that it is based on earlier payment, but in turn for that, it offers potential to make the industry more fandom-centric, and to make "going indie" in the future easier for corporate artists.

Yes, I've read Bob's complaints about how corporations are using it too greedily, how the resulting works are not innovative enough, etc. I'm just yet to see how it's actually worse, or even as bad as the alternative.

It's not suprising that Kickstarter has now got big multi-nationals interested. The marketing potential is huge - and hey it's brilliant people pay to be surveyed (ok maybe overly cynical..).

I honestly though don't know if you can have one rule for one class of project thats allowed because it meets some arbitary rules and another refused for being to big (Mars Kickstarter).

The big effect of this though I think for everyone is the attention it's going to gather for Kickstarter and croiwd funding platforms in gerneral, the tax implications are huge. Many people on crowd funding sites don't consider tax at all. The big projects like this using KS as a marketing and pre-order system are gong to get the attention of the tax man. This isn't an equity investment it's a donation pre-order campaign and thats all potentially taxabale (not just in the USA but world wide as well). It's probably fair to say that so far most projects have avoided this issue as they just aren't big enough to attract attention and well from the authorities position, let the market mature before you tax it.

So for those who are wondering where it might fail this could be where, but also it may well be the thing that keeps big business TM off the platforms.

"You (studio/company/etc.) make the product, and if we (the consumer) like it we'll then consider giving you money for it."

Maybe that's what we were taught in economy classes ages ago, but that's not how the market works these days.

Now it works like this: Company makes the product and then does ANYTHING to exchange the product for the consumer's money. If the customer doesn't really care for the product, the company will try to convince the customer to buy it anyway. And it works really well for the most part.

What Kickstarter does, is pretty much what it always did. Finding finances for products which otherwise wouldn't get financed. It doesn't matter who's the creator. Corporations with huge loads of cash are extremely careful with them and don't greenlight just anything. So it's pretty reasonable from them to ask: "Well, do you want this? Then prove to us you'll actually buy it."

Yes it's somewhat greedy, but if say, FOX would make a Kickstarter campaign for continuation of Firefly (or whatever), or some games distributor would want to see if a PC version of some game makes sense, why not kickstart it. Of course considering that all the backers get the final product.

Don't worry, I'm quite sure Activision won't make a campaign for the next Call of Duty. THAT will get financed by them forever.

Though I'd be also happier if there was a corporate spinoff of Kicstarter.

Entitled:

mdqp:

I believe you are right in most regards, but I still can't help feeling that big companies have proven themselves to be quite uncaring toward the public opinion (I always feel like people have a very short memory when it comes to this kind of scandals)

Oh, they certainly are uncaring. I just don't think that your point of comparison is accurate for these kind of scandals.

As a rule of thumb, big publishers are not participation in outright scams. Sure, they will overprice everything as far as they can, they will dumb down stories, and put you in prison to protect their IP from your piracy, but these are all on an entirely different level from riding off into the sunset with their consumers' money without delivering any product.

And that's not even just a matter of legality, just as they can avoid accountability on Kickstarter by using a producer as a front, they could do the same in other businesses, collecting your money under a fake identity and then run away with it, but they can't.

mdqp:

Crowdfunding has still a long way to go, and it still might be unusable for big budget projects (AAA video games titles are beyond the scope of the current crowdfunding system)

I wouldn't be so sure about that, btw. Project Eternity got $4m, from 74k backers, by asking for $20-$25 and getting $54 on average.

And Kickstarter is still rapindly growing, Torment and Veronica Mars are both going to be past that. Now just triple the min. price point, quadraple the audience, and you have $60 games backed by 300k people, paying $90 on average, giving an end result of $27 million. That's more than the budget of Assassin's Creed 1, or Crysis 1.

And 300k potential backers is a conservative estimate, there are millions willing to pay full price eearly for normal preorders. The only difference between that and Kickstarter is a matter of trust, how sure you are that the game will get made.

As I said, I am probably a little too paranoid, but you are right, there shouldn't be a risk of a scam in plain sight.

Of course, when you pay before the the product/service has been provided, it's always a matter of trust (and even if pre-ordering hasn't always been the best consumer practice, I see what you mean with that).

Is there a way to know if there is a positive trend in the size and/or the successfulness of the kickstarted projects? There are a few stats on the website, but I can't seem to find some of the information I would be more interested in.

Entitled:

I am Harbinger:
I can just see it: In a few years, EA will be putting up kickstarters for their games, then selling those games at full price, and even then they'll still be chocked full of always-online drm and in-game transactions, not to mention plenty of half-assed dlc and online passes for those dirty peasants who buy used. Oh, and they'll still have all the same server problems, even if those lovely kickstarters do manage to pony up enough to meet the mark EA said 'might' help them keep it from happening AGAIN.

The saddest part is, I was trying to be sarcastic there, but I honestly can see EA doing all of that...

I would be more worried about that, if EA would have any respected developers or untainted franchises left that can attract the kind of cult following.

What are they going to put up on Kickstarter? Mass Effect is now hated by its own fans, Dead Space turned to generic shooter mediocrity, Sim City is is practically a swear word...

Sure, their games continue to sell, but they sell on a meh-factor, as shiny empty examples of mainstream genericness that the casual consumer tolerates because they are "not that bad".

So far, most Kickstarter successes were coming from beloved franchises, studios, and artists. Even though Veronica Mars did become a cult classic under Warner, Warner kind of deserves this by the virtue of not alienating away the original producers and desecrating the franchise.

That's something that EA can't tell about itself. All the series from EA that a cult fandom would be interested in Kickstarting, are already Kickstarted by their actual original developers, (whom EA has driven away), as "spiritual successors", while EA is busy profiting from their "mainstream appeal".

That's the most exciting change that I hope from Kickstarter: more focus on what elitist audience fandoms want, instead of trying to appeal to everyone.

I didn't say it'd work, I'd like to think we as a whole are generally smarter than to fall for that, but to play devil's advocate, let's not forget that EA has a track record of buying up acclaimed IP's (Mass Effect springs to mind) because they can see a buck to be made. And besides, this is EA we're talking about. If there's a dollar to be made, they'll try it. But I agree, I can see the potential that Kickstarter will open the doors for people who want to make a game for the love of the game itself, rather than because it will meet sales figures. I'm just cynical enough to see the worst case outcome as probable.

"Ransom" that's the word I've been looking for, when describing this.
This is a little disturbing. Think if EA gets on this wagon.

mdqp:

Is there a way to know if there is a positive trend in the size and/or the successfulness of the kickstarted projects? There are a few stats on the website, but I can't seem to find some of the information I would be more interested in.

Kickstarter as a whole has increased it's traffic from $27 million in 2010, to $99 million in 2011, to $319 million through 2012.

Assuming sustainable linear growth, it would go beyond $1 billion in 2013 and $3 billion in 2014.

It was not growing evenly, here is a chart about the growth until two years ago, (note that the games section is practically nonexistent), and here are some charts from 2012 showing how the games section exploded after Double Fine.

Here are some stats about the spillover effect of a single work's backers exploding and increasing everything else's funding as well.

One problem I have with this is that too many people view Kickstarter as the end of the process ("Yay, we got Kickstarted!") and not the start. Kickstarter is a fund-raising platform, not a content delivery platform. It matters a lot less about how a title gets funded than what it actually delivers.

I looked at this last year for video games (and please note I think the delivery rates for every Kickstarter 'genre' should be considered separately) and up to October last year only about 1 in 3 Kickstarted video game projects actually release something.

http://unsubject.files.wordpress.com/2012/11/slide4.png?w=551&h=193

I'm going to go back and update these figures later, but the issue is delivery. No-one will care that the Veronica Mars movie was Kickstarted if it turns out to be terrible.

And yes, I do think the Veronica Mars Kickstarter raises some ugly precedents. As Bob points out, it's potentially a market research technique where we pay the studio to tell them how popular something is.

On the flip side, it also means a lot of screaming from fans on all elements that go into the project that's been Kickstarted. People already go stupidly nuts about a character's skin colour / gender / hair style, so imagine what happens when those same people have paid $100 before casting had even started. "I backed your Kickstarter AND YOU OWE ME!" will become the battlecry of the high-disposable income jerk.

Bob I get what you're saying but still I can see Kickstarter being used by big companies for good too.

Take Timesplitters, it's a FPS series from last generation. It's frantic, fast paced and does not take itself seriously at all. It was a lot of fun but the last game that came out was in 2005. The owners of the franchise were bought out by Crytek and after much demand Crytek released a statement saying they'd make a Timesplitters HD collection if they got a petition with 300 thousand signatures or something like that. It got about 1/3 of it. They never hinted at a kickstarter but I see no other way that Timesplitters would ever come back except maybe if another company bought the franchise and made their own game.

I can certainly understand the fear that this system will be subverted. Industries are good at subverting things that are beneficial to us. Look at the games industry, the industry of our medium of choice for crying out loud! We get some fairly dodgy stuff happening even from good things; DRM issues, microtransactions in games that are already full price and more. If Kickstarter starts getting abused with the sort of mindset that many people appear to have in the games and films industries then it could kick up (heh) a serious shitstorm. It could drive funding away from smaller independent projects that Kickstarter is meant to help in favour of remakes, and people milking our love for various franchises. It might never happen, but the simple fact that it -potentially- could is in itself very scary. I certainly don't want to see us go down that road.

Jamous:
If Kickstarter starts getting abused with the sort of mindset that many people appear to have in the games and films industries then it could kick up (heh) a serious shitstorm. It could drive funding away from smaller independent projects

If the more abusive projects would stir up a shitstorm, how would they drive people away from smaller independent projects?

Unless you are implying that the small independent projects are the ones abusing their audience and stirring up a shitstorm.

Jamous:
It could drive funding away from smaller independent projects that Kickstarter is meant to help in favour of remakes, and people milking our love for various franchises. It might never happen, but the simple fact that it -potentially- could is in itself very scary. I certainly don't want to see us go down that road.

This has nothing to do with either big or small projects "abusing" Kickstarter.

Kickstarter is meant to fund projects that fans are interested in helping to make.

If fans are interested in remakes, and milking franchises, then Kickstarter was always meant to fund remakes and franchises.

Entitled:
snippetysnipsnip

I didn't put that all that clearly. When I said driving funding away from smaller projects getting it remakes instead I meant in the same way that Warner Bros does not need the 2 million from Kickstarter should they have chosen to make the Veronica Mars movie, but it got funded all the same. If you already have the money (more than enough by a fair ways, in fact) to make the movie/game/whatever I do not think you should be using Kickstarter to fund it.

As to my earlier comment about the shitstorm driving away from smaller independent projects? If people started to routinely fuck with the system then people would likely stop using Kickstarter, or at least use it substantially less frequently. This would hurt the smaller projects who -need- Kickstarter whilst leaving larger companies, those abusing the system, no worse off.

I think my problem was just saying remakes whereas I meant those that can already get access to a budget via movie studios etc.

Jamous:

I didn't put that all that clearly. When I said driving funding away from smaller projects getting it remakes instead I meant in the same way that Warner Bros does not need the 2 million from Kickstarter should they have chosen to make the Veronica Mars movie, but it got funded all the same. If you already have the money (more than enough by a fair ways, in fact) to make the movie/game/whatever I do not think you should be using Kickstarter to fund it.

Your hypothesis is based on a false premise, that there is a limited amount of backer money that all projects are fighting for against each other.

In fact, we have data indicating, that big "blockbuster" Kickstarter are drawing so many new backers to the site from their own fandom, that they are actively benefiting other projects by increasing Kickstarter traffic.

Jamous:

As to my earlier comment about the shitstorm driving away from smaller independent projects? If people started to routinely fuck with the system then people would likely stop using Kickstarter, or at least use it substantially less frequently.

I think my problem was just saying remakes whereas I meant those that can already get access to a budget via movie studios etc.

Well, then it's depending on what do you really mean by them "fucking with the system".

Because making remakes that people want wouldn't drive people away, and likewise, big studios making movies that they could afford to make, evidently isn't driving people away.

It has no reason to, people aren't actually harmed by Warner being able to afford a Veronica Mars movie, if anything, it helps as a guarantee that the film is in professional hands, and not depending on some poor artist trying not to go bankrupt.

CrazyBlaze:

Diana Kingston-Gabai:
I'm not entirely clear on your point here, Bob. If Kickstarter's raison d'etre is to finance projects that otherwise would never have seen the light of day due to a lack of mainstream support... isn't that exactly what's happened here? Moreover, the $35 reward for this project is a digital copy of the movie - about the same price you'd pay for a Blu-Ray ("The Silver Lining Playbook" is going for $28 on Amazon right now) - so at the most basic level, investors aren't required to pay again once the movie actually comes out...

But what happens when they stop handing out the movie when you pay. What happens when you only get signed posters for $50 or a trailer for a $100.

Then you can not pay for it.

I threw in $5 for an independent film and that was before I found out they'd be releasing it online. Thing is they're also doing a premiere in L.A. and I don't mind paying a ticket for it (it's a combination of film and live performance).

Entitled:
Kickstarter as a whole has increased it's traffic from $27 million in 2010, to $99 million in 2011, to $319 million through 2012.

Assuming sustainable linear growth, it would go beyond $1 billion in 2013 and $3 billion in 2014.

It was not growing evenly, here is a chart about the growth until two years ago, (note that the games section is practically nonexistent), and here are some charts from 2012 showing how the games section exploded after Double Fine.

Here are some stats about the spillover effect of a single work's backers exploding and increasing everything else's funding as well.

Thanks! The statistics on the website were just a small part of the whole, and when it re-directed me to the blog, I didn't find what I was looking for, either.

100% agree. This is risk management at it's lowest - they can make something, and sod quality control, because it's paid for up front. Using Kickstarter (and by extension, fans) to carry all of the risk with reviving a dead show is poor taste - that responsibility is what the studio is for. Throw in the fact that the people (unlike the studio) won't own a stake in the IP in any way means that the studio has effectively made the fans buy the property for them, and won't give them a single cut of future earnings from project. Ergo, free money ion every sense of the word.

As a scam, it's fantastic in its simplicity. You'd better believe that before someone invests in a film, they want a level of control, an oversight of progress (genuine oversight, not youtube updates), a say in marketing strategy and final cuts, and overview of how much everyone in the project is earning, with the power to object to renumeration policies that they disagree with. The Kickstarter investors will get none of that, but still bear the financial responsibility with none of the reward (although they might get a tshirt, and get to meet an actor if they invest above the average!). It is sickening.

Am I the only one here who is more concerned about the impact this will have on those smaller developers who don't have the option of studio funding, than about big companies being able to increase their profits? We're already starting to see it now, with big names largely overshadowing unknowns.

DragonStorm247:
Am I the only one here who is more concerned about the impact this will have on those smaller developers who don't have the option of studio funding, than about big companies being able to increase their profits? We're already starting to see it now, with big names largely overshadowing unknowns.

Again, this is not actually true. we have data showing that rather than other projects getting overshadowed, a blockbuster project coming to Kickstarter leads new backers to Kickstarter, and results in all projects getting more funded, including the small ones, and the ones in unrelated categories.

At least I'll get a couple good titles out of crowd-sourcing before big media shits over all of that too.
Even right now I can see how easy and inviting it would be to scam people on crowd sourcing via bait-and-switch and pawns.

Granted, this could be worked around if most people just did a modicum of research before committing finances, and you would hope that people so invested in seeing such properties and works would be more discerning than the usual stupid "lowest common denominator" sheeple that media giants love to exploit.

Or maybe I'm giving too much credit to pathos-dominated fandom.

Atmos Duality:

Granted, this could be worked around if most people just did a modicum of research before committing finances, and you would hope that people so invested in seeing such properties and works would be more discerning than the usual stupid "lowest common denominator" sheeple that media giants love to exploit.

Or maybe I'm giving too much credit to pathos-dominated fandom.

We already have a few examples of backers rejecting projects that appeared to do everything by the book.

The Wildman kickstarter from GPG because it appeared to be built on a risky financial situation, and the "Old-School RPG" that was way too obviously pandering to the hardcore pathos.

These are already examples of fandom cynicism and research and expectations of at least some originality appearing where the "lowest common denominator" couldn't even name the creator, let alone care about it's financial or moral capabilities.

Or just look at how many games are successfully advertising themselves as "No DRM, No DLC", which is something that the mass market wouldn't ever care about.

I think, the main problem is, that we just lost our sense of how SMALL our online communities are compared to the mass market, so every time something that we hate happens, there is an outry of how *WE* as gamers are sheeple for never being able to boycott anything, and for buying the crap that we are preaching against.

And sure, products pandering to a hardcore fandom also has it's negative side effects, as anyone into the anime otakudom can tell, but it's also very different from mainstream pandering in many ways, and imo overall more appropriate for nerd type audiences.

A few years ago, we called crowdfunding a "revolution." Revolutions aren't supposed to look exactly like what came before.

"Phah!What planet are you from?"
-The Entirety of Human History

But seriously though, I don't think any of this is that big of a deal. Yes, people who have money are going to try and make more money. They will likely succeed. As long as you get the stuff you want (a tv show, a game or whatever) out of it, I don't see the harm. Not like you can just tell them to stop being rich and they'll shrug and agree with you.

For just this once ( and probably first time ever ), I'm almost fully agreeing with Bob.
But you know.. it took you a while to figure it out..
I have been claiming this exact problem with the few multi-million game kickstarters that we've been seing lately.

Are people really funding an interesting game idea that can't get funding in any other way or are they funding Tim Schaefer's fame assurance? Obsidian needs no help to make more games, it is still a rather successful developer, but they used it for project eternity. Wasteland and Planescape torment, both hold a pretty sturdy seat along cult rpg classics, and it seems with just mentioning their name, millions of dollars get flung towards them.
I'm glad they are getting made, great. But it also raises the question of actual independent endeavours totally eclipsed by these monolithic almost corporate productions, and yeah, I've seen the numbers.

I understand that it still works positively for the smaller teams, and that this behemoths promote awareness towards the possibility of donating money to kickstarter campaigns in the general audience. But I doubt it having a lasting effect, since it's becoming evident that a lot of the people just go in to donate to the blockbuster kickstarters (shouldn't that be an oximoron?). Well look into the "most funded" category. Only a few of the picked are actually independent teams, most are sequels. Is this the idea? or should we be rebranding this to FameHypeStarter?

Maybe it really happens that these projects couldn't get funded in any other way, but most of the time, it tends to spring the question, couldn't they, or they just didn't want to respond to a producer, because they just want it their own way... Do they really NEED to be there??

I understand that people are more willing to trust on a proven reliable products and teams that they already love, but isn't getting rid of that dynamic the whole purpose of kickstarter?

Its so strange though, we all criticise Hollywood, and the general entertainment industry's lack of creativity, reliance on by-the-numbers repetition.. but when given the choice.. we want more of the same -"but it's not the same same, it's a different same!!"- hmm I suppose nothing can be done about it.. masses are masses, and when they speak... we can't ignore it.. even when they say really dumb things.

There are some small differences here. We are not talking about Developers being a problem. The Director of VM is the Developer in this case. In the case of say, Obsidian, it was about cutting the PUBLISHER out of the loop. Take Alpha Protocol. Obsidian developed it from the ground up (minus the basis of the engine they licensed from Bioware). However, to publish it they had to go to Sega, and part of that deal was that Sega controls the IP. Now, if they wanted to go back and try and make a 2nd one, they would need Sega's permission. The kick starters by developers are so that they can retain their rights and creative vision and go with Investors that believe in that vision.

Avelone is on record as saying a "a publisher" (read Sega again) approached him about making an original IP, having it run through Kickstarter, and then giving it to them to publish. His response to the publisher was in essence, "Wait, you want me to work up all this stuff for an original IP, use my name to get people to pay for it, then sign it over to you for nothing?" The publisher looked confused for a moment, and the seed for PE was planted when Avelone realized he could do it for himself and Obsidian and cut Sega out of the whole mess.

The wet cement in this Veronica Mars project is that the *Publisher* owns the rights, and told the *developer* to go get some money on Kickstarter to mitigate their risks. This is a little scary, because knowing they can take advantage of fans is the first step on a very dark road. "We cannot afford to bring Will Weaton back to Big Ban Theory unless we get a 3M kickstarter for the season. He's just *too expensive*. Now excuse me while I go roll in money." That kind of thing.

In my mind, it's not about "who" or "what" is being kick started. It's about giving the people behind it full control of the project without "outside" money having an influence on the creative direction. I fear it's going to become about manipulating us.

Entitled:

DragonStorm247:
Am I the only one here who is more concerned about the impact this will have on those smaller developers who don't have the option of studio funding, than about big companies being able to increase their profits? We're already starting to see it now, with big names largely overshadowing unknowns.

Again, this is not actually true. we have data showing that rather than other projects getting overshadowed, a blockbuster project coming to Kickstarter leads new backers to Kickstarter, and results in all projects getting more funded, including the small ones, and the ones in unrelated categories.

For now. But there is no unlimited source of potential backers, so I don't think a situation where big projects bring in new people who will spend money on unrelated KS projects can last.

Lieju:

Entitled:

Again, this is not actually true. we have data showing that rather than other projects getting overshadowed, a blockbuster project coming to Kickstarter leads new backers to Kickstarter, and results in all projects getting more funded, including the small ones, and the ones in unrelated categories.

For now. But there is no unlimited source of potential backers, so I don't think a situation where big projects bring in new people who will spend money on unrelated KS projects can last.

If big projects will stop bringing in new backers, then obviously they will stop growing as the site's popularity hits a plateau. therefore there would still be no reason to worry about them syphoning away more and more people from other projects.

You are missing the bigger picture of what that statistic means: So far, we only had bigger and bigger projects to begin with, solely because they brought in newer and newer fans.

The idea that in the future, the backers will start ignoring smaller projects, requires not one, but two hypothetical changes:
First, that Kickstarter runs out of new backers. And THEN, that the old Kickstaretr users change their backing habits, and let big projects start to syphon away people from small ones, which we know they didn't do until now.

Who knows, it MIGHT happen, but we have zero evidence, or even tangible suspicion why it should be likely.
The reasons why people are afraid of this possibility, are the misinterpreted scales off success, with people like DragonStorm247 believing that they already see the signs of small projects shrinking, while really it's just an optical illusion, thanks to small projects getting less relative attention (but numerically more money).

It's like when the police arrests someone for robbery, based on fingerprint matches. Then they learn that the original match was an error. Then they say "Anyways, he might still be guilty of SOMETHING". Yeah, he might, but there is absolutely nothing indicating it, and the only reason we are considering it was a dumb misunderstanding to begin with.

I seriously hope Gravity Falls gets another season...

Also, this article reminds me of a recent Jimquisition episode, where he talks about how Game Companies do whatever they can to take your money before actually earning it, say that the phrase "Shut up and take my money!" needs to be replaced by "Shut up and EARN my money!".

 Pages PREV 1 2 3 4 5 NEXT

Reply to Thread

Log in or Register to Comment
Have an account? Login below:
With Facebook:Login With Facebook
or
Username:  
Password:  
  
Not registered? To sign up for an account with The Escapist:
Register With Facebook
Register With Facebook
or
Registered for a free account here