The Way We Live Now

‘Kickstarter Addiction’ is Apparently a Thing Now

Is this real life?
 Kickstarter Addiction is Apparently a Thing Now

(Photo: Today’s Picks)

There’s already email addiction, Facebook addiction and wholesale Internet addiction. Next up on the psychological disorders docket? Kickstarter addiction: people who are “addicted” to the rush of finding and backing fledgling projects on Kickstarter.

The notion of “Kickstarter addiction,” as defined by VentureBeat, encapsulates the do-gooder rush and risk-averse anxiety rooted in crowdfunding. Throwing money at half-formed ideas and projects is kind of like gambling, argues VentureBeat, except you don’t have to be situated on a sketchy boardwalk and coated in cigarette smoke to get your fix. There’s just one snag in their theory. The only evidence of this “growing number of people” addicted to Kickstarter is a single thread on the Geek and Sundry message boards.

Some serial Kickstarter backers justify their compulsions as an act of generosity. “I feel like I’m not a terribly creative person myself, but by enabling others to express their creativity, I might be helping in some small way,” one backer told VentureBeat. Of course, this is conveniently ignoring the fact that contributing to a Kickstarter campaign isn’t a charitable write-off: backers also expect to get some tangible good in return.

As far as bad habits go, being addicted to giving away money to enable someone else’s creative vision won’t exactly land you on Intervention. Still, we eagerly await MTV’s investigative take: True Life: I’m Addicted to Crowdfunding.