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Kickstarter, My First Impression (the consumer perspective)

07.09.2012, Business, Journal, Reviews, Tech, by .

Been meaning to spend a little more time researching kickstarter, so here goes. I went to kickstarter.com and I’m greeted with a “staff pick”. Ok, I’ve always thought staff picks were lame anywhere but a site like CNet where all they’re doing is reviewing the top X digital cameras and whatnot. But, I understand why a business, when it comes to their home page, wants to direct users toward revenue maximizing opportunities.

In any event I then scanned the categories and thought “OK, lets see what they have for technology projects”. I clicked on technology and saw a link that read: “See all 50 Technology projects”. Awesome, from there I should be able to browse through some list of projects with filtering and sorting or something. At the very least I’d expect to “See all 50 Technology projects” rather than more things like “staff picks”, lol. Instead, I’m brought to a page where there are 4 sections: Staff Picks (sigh), Popular This Week, Recently Successful, & Most Funded. Disappointed with their decision to make me click at least an extra time to get my list of 50 technology projects, I look around for the “browse” or “view all” link. Hmm, nothing. I can “see more staff picks”, “see more popular this week”, etc. Fine, I’ll let you hold my hand rather than giving me the ability to just browse the open projects. So I think, “what would I like to see?” Answer: Lets see what they have for projects that have not met their goal. Maybe I’m weird, but projects that have already reached their goal are not particularly interesting to me, nor are project that have already been completed. Looking at the aforementioned sections:

  • Staff Picks – OK, Not to beat the dead horse too much, but this is at the top of the page rather than somewhere less significant, where it belongs. This means that their staff essentially gets to pick the winners and losers? (i. e. who shows up at the top of each category page, and who ends up buried somewhere.)
  • Popular This week – OK, this is a start. There is one of the 3 that they gave me that is not already past 100% funding, but many are already funded, and many are likely just last week’s “Staff Picks”. (note: this is actually the way to get to all 51 open projects.. via clicking “See more popular projects”. ¬†Was that intuitive to you?)
  • Recently Successful – These are all already funded by definition. Also, they likely spent significant time as a staff pick or “popular this week”. Either way, not what I’m looking for.
  • Most Funded – All already funded, all completed, and all useless to me.

I get that they are trying to maximize the chances of a person pledging money to a project so that they can take their cut. I get that people are most likely to pledge to projects that other people have already made the decision to pledge to (same idea as an e-commerce site putting the most popular products on front pages). I get that a pledge going to a project that will not be funded instead of one that will or already is funded is essentially lost revenue for Kickstarter. But, please… just give me a list of all of the projects in the category.

Where is the page where I can “See all 50 Technology projects” and do basic things like sorting/filtering of those 50 items? Does it exist? I don’t know. Because it’s certainly not the page I’m given when I click “See all 50 Technology projects”.