While the music industry spent a few weeks hammering Kickstarter millionaire Amanda Palmer for not paying musicians (she finally caved and is paying now), the company recently introduced a new set of rules for their Hardware And Product Design category to protect customers and to try and define what the site is actually to be used for in a larger regard.
In a new blog post titled “Kickstarter Is Not A Store,” the company outlines its new rules, which include forcing funders to include a “risks and challenges” section, stopping the use of kickstarter for theoretical hardware or using only simulations in your kickstarter–if the item doesn't actually exist yet, you can't crowd-fund it, and that a hardware product cannot offer multiple quantities of a reward.
By including a “risks and challenges” section, the company states that “people can [then] 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 exclusion of photorealistic renderings or multi-pack rewards has caught some flack with CNNMoney pointing out that 9 of the top 10 items in the Hardware And Product Design category had included the aforementioned.
While this may be welcomed by a slew of customers, many found Kickstarter to be a place to fund the non-existant and are worried this may cripple the site's capabilities to connect risk-taking audiences with progressive-minded entrepreneurs. With 2015 only a few years away, we really need to get that hoverboard made already…