Kickstarter has been going to through an identity crisis recently. Rather than “investing” in projects, many users were essentially pre-ordering products that didn’t yet exist — many of which would never exist. The startup hopes to change all that.
As of today:
Creators must talk about “Risks and Challenges”
Today we added a new section to the project page called “Risks and Challenges.” All project creators are now required to answer the following question when creating their project:
“What are the risks and challenges this project faces, and what qualifies you to overcome them?”
We added the “Risks and Challenges” section to reinforce that creators’ projects are in development. Before backing a project, people can judge both the creator’s ability to complete their project as promised and whether they feel the creator is being open and honest about the risks and challenges they face.
The new section will appear below the project description of projects that launch starting today.
New Hardware and Product Design Project Guidelines
The development of new products can be especially complex for creators and seductive to backers. Today we’re adding additional guidelines for Hardware and Product Design projects.
- Product simulations are prohibited. Projects cannot simulate events to demonstrate what a product might do in the future. Products can only be shown performing actions that they’re able to perform in their current state of development.
- Product renderings are prohibited. Product images must be photos of the prototype as it currently exists.
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.
We’ve also added the following guideline for Hardware and Product Design projects:
- Offering multiple quantities of a reward is prohibited. Hardware and Product Design projects can only offer rewards in single quantities or a sensible set (some items only make sense as a pair or as a kit of several items, for instance). 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.