Kickstarter: More Tools to Ride The Wave
Today I had planned to write about the sharp drop off in projects in the last week of 2012, as prospective creators were either too busy to launch projects, or rightly feared the impact that the holidays would have on their projects. I would have continued on, to discuss how on New Years day the flood gates opened once more as the 50+ projects daily average resumed. I may even have made some clever observation tying this phenomenon into a certain New Year’s tradition, or mentioned how I think most of the well planned projects will wait another month at least, for the Christmas debt hangover to end, before venturing forth.
But then I discovered something more interesting to talk about. To find out what that is, you’re just going to have to keep reading.
Okay, discovered might have been a bit of a stretch; what actually happened was the owner of Kicktraq, Adam, who I chat with on occasion, messaged me to share a new feature he has attached to his site: a news feed for each project. Adam and I have chatted on occasion since I spent a goodly portion of The Wardenclyffe Horror’s advertising budget on his site (plug: to prospective creators, I considered this to be an excellent investment, and would suggest you look into it.) He’s a great guy, and his site is invaluable – it would be impossible to keep track of so many projects on a platform with so few native search tools without it.
Adam has added a couple thousand news stories to many of the projects on each project page, allowing users a new level of granularity to their knowledge seeking. Currently this requires someone (him, actually) to manually locate and link said stories to the pages, but going forward he plans to allow users to submit links, and some system of moderation (again, probably him) to choose whether or not to allow the link. I feel this is a particularly important distinction to make, to prevent the site from being filled with self serving news releases. After all we already have /r/Kickstarter for that (go up vote a story or two that is not someone shamelessly promoting their project – better yet, link one of mine.) A hub that allows a person to see all of a Kickstarter project’s vitals at a glance, including interviews, and critical news stories is an invaluable tool, and I’m so glad that Adam has taken the time to create that feature. It is hard to believe that Kickstarter hasn’t just outright purchased his site and features to augment their own lackluster offerings in that regard.
So what other features do you think Adam should incorporate into his site? What features would you, as a user, like to see? I’ll make sure that clever suggestions make it his way.
Oh hey, I know a few “stories” about Kickstarter projects. 😉
It may be too much to ask, but I’d personally love better project browsing – deeper hierarchies for category (genres of video games, for example). It would, of course, require more information about each project than Kickstarter itself has, but maybe the creators themselves could add that information if they care enough for their project to be discovered – it’s in their best interest, no?
At present you only wrote when the project dies, though.
Would moves like this lead you to write more about active projects in an attempt to warn away prospective backers?
Given the levels of flexibility and clarity of Kickstarter’s searching and browsing options…I want them nowhere near Kicktraq. Gods only know what creeping horror would emerge from such a union.
Improvement, one would hope. I mean, how could the tools possibly get any worse?
I agree. I think it would be a good thing. The Kickstarter site needs all the help it can get!