Thanks for playing folks. I think this is the final nail in the coffin of the Scribble Campaign. It’s not very likely that they’ll find another crowdfunding platform that will accept them.
Though it never should have gotten this far, a lot of interesting things happened during this campaign. Firstly, we learned that Kickstarter will step in to force creators to be more forthright with their campaigns. Secondly, we got an excellent piece from Hackaday explaining how little was known about this team and how poorly the news media covered the project.
Finally, I found it particularly interesting how precisely information was revealed during this campaign. First, a completely non technical concept design by Jinsun Park (in no way associated with the Scribble guys) blew up on the web and established an excited user base for a color picking pen. Years later, Scribble formed and released a “teaser” several months before their campaign launched which allowed the team to get their name out there and start collecting email addresses.
This early press release contained just enough information to get people excited while hiding enough to prevent skeptics from riling up against it. By time the campaign actually launched, thousands of excited backers received emails and immediately backed the project causing the team to reach their $100,000 goal in just six hours. Furthermore, any new developments on the project were drowned out by the overly exuberant coverage from months before. Even now, searches for “Scribble Pen” will return results singing the praises of the pen from articles dated well before any of the project’s controversy. This makes it difficult for even an uneasy backer to get any good information:
I hope this project serves as an example to all crowdfunding enthusiasts. Being a little skeptical can bring around real change and strengthen the legitimacy of the crowdfunding movement as a whole. More importantly, just because The Guardian, The Huffington Post, and CNet write about a project doesn’t mean that they know anything more than you do, and seeing their logo on a campaign page is not an indicator of legitimacy. Look for assessment from technical experts or journalists who have actually touched a prototype when deciding where to spend your money and send your support.
Or just keep reading this blog