Kickstart or Kill

Kickstart or Kill

This Is the Most Bizarre Crowdfunding Video We’ve Ever Seen

Screen Shot 2014-08-24 at 3.15.58 PM

At Betabeat, we consider ourselves connoisseurs of the Kickstarter horror story. Usually, the strange videos we’ve come across have been poorly made home videos — honest attempts by clueless civilians. Sometimes though, you find that perfect marriage of high production value and complete WTFness.

The crowdfunding video for a productivity app called Wimble looks like Barney Stinton’s video resume meets The Room. In it, a Finnish man wearing all black errthang is chased through an urban dystopia by a swarm of flying clocks before discovering the almighty Wimble. Read More

Kickstart or Kill

Someone’s Trying to Raise $100K on Kickstarter for a Bitcoin Movie

This is what a Bitcoin user looks like.

Surely this is some sort of startup Singularity: Someone is trying to raise $100,000 via Kickstarter in order to make a documentary that would educate the world about Bitcoin and its global “socioeconomic impact.”

Says one interviewee featured in the sizzle reel, “There should be a lot more documentaries because of the complexity of how Bitcoin works.”

Sounds riveting. Read More

Kickstart or Kill

Explain THAT, Clarissa: Melissa Joan Hart’s Failed Kickstarter Canceled

(Photo: Screencap)

It’s helped celebs like Zach Braff and Kristen Bell pull together the cash for their passion projects, but it looks like the Kickstarter gravy train has finally dumped a famous person right on her ass. Childhood sassiness role model and erstwhile teen witch Melissa Joan Hart’s project has, sadly, failed abysmally.

Ms. Hart wanted to raise $2 million for Darci’s Walk of Shame, about a school teacher who has sex with a waiter while in Thailand for her sister’s wedding (really). She appealed to her fans: “By playing Darci, I will get the chance to once again be in a fun and hilarious Rom-Com much like Drive Me Crazy…only all grown up and having a roll in the hay with the hot actors in the film!” Read More

Kickstart or Kill

Kickstarter Owns Up to Being ‘Mockable,’ Still Doesn’t Care About Deadlines

Still waiting around for some sort of weird tchotchke you backed months ago on Kickstarter? Well, at least you’ve got company. In a big, expansive package released today, CNN Money crunched the numbers and found that of the 50 most-funded projects in the platform’s history, 84 percent were late. A mere eight were delivered on time.

Youch. And how much sympathy does cofounder Yancy Strickler have for your discontent? Well, here’s what he told CNN Money: Read More

Kickstart or Kill

Fab Finds Itself in the Middle of a Kickstarter Ripoff Mess [UPDATED]

The Kickstarted pen.

Those of you in the throes of a flash sale addiction might’ve noted a snazzy little pen that popped up on yesterday. However, it might have looked a little familiar. The design blog Notcot points out that the Torr Pen, with its distinctive ruler sleeve, looked an awful lot like the Pen Type-A, an overfunded Kickstarter project that’s faced many a manufacturing-related trial over the last year.

Fab, it turns out, did not find this fabulous. The sale has been yanked from the site.  Read More

Kickstart or Kill

The Onion News Network Eviscerates Kickstarter as Home to ‘Panhandlers’

Ouch. (Photo: Screencap)

For every snazzy hardware idea and genuinely inspiring artistic project, there’s also a whole lot of crap clogging up crowdfunding sites. This has not escaped the attention of the acerbic wits at the Onion News Network. And so the site’s latest video turns its knives on Kickstarter, dubbing it “an insidious new Internet scam,” roping people into donating to projects that are “in actuality, just terrible useless garbage.” Read More

Kickstart or Kill

Is This The Best Kickstarter Backer Reward Ever? (Answer: Possibly, Yes.)

free cab rides

You know Kickstarter: Back a project with a donation, if the project reaches its backing goal, your donation gets used, and in exchange, usually you’ll get something for being one of the first backers of the project. So what could a guy working on a “modern adaptation” of Samuel Beckett’s Waiting For Godot (entitled, naturally, Waiting For The G, as in New York City’s notoriously not very reliable G-Train) have to offer besides his brilliant mind for existential drama revivalism?

As it happens: He’s a cab driver. He’s a cab driver who has been written about in The New Yorker and who has a nice Tumblr of Things He Sees From His Cab. But most importantly, yes… Read More

Kickstart or Kill

Kickstart or Kill: The Newer York, Literary Mag That ‘Wants To Screw With Your Mind’

kickstart or kill

If you’re anything like us, the only reason to plunk down actual cash for a literary magazine is when: (1) your friend’s byline is in it and you feel guilty or (2) you’re at the issue launch party and you feel guilty. Basically we’re really motivated by guilt! But a new venture, The Newer York, out of Brooklyn would like to change our mind. Well, according to the description, they’d like to screw it.

“We’re a weird sort of literary mag. Our rule: no short stories, no poetry, no essays. We want to play around with literary form and narration, we want to screw with your mind! Read More

Kickstart or Kill

Kickstart or Kill: New York, Phew York – A Scratch and Sniff Guide to the Big Apple

kickstart or kill

With the temperature peaking over 100 degrees today and the East River especially full of raw sewage, now is as good a time as any to consider the wonderful smells that remind us of New York.

Amber Jones, a veteran concierge, is an expert at guiding Big Apple visitors to the best the city has to offer. But in her new book, New York, Phew York, she has decided not to gloss over the ugly odors you’ll encounter along the way.

But you can’t DO New York, without smelling it’s smells; From pizza to hot dogs, to those sewer expels. Smells of bagels and lox, and garbage stuffed trucks, Because summer to winter, these smells are in flux.”

Ok, maybe it would be better if she stuck to the hotel business, but the concept for the book is still clever. Smells explored in the book include: Red Apple, Strawberry, Garbage Pizza Hot dogs Sewer steam, Fish, Churros, Peanuts, Horse Manure, Shish-kabobs, Smoke, Bagels, Grass, Piragua Ice Cone, Pickles, Pastrami, and More! Read More

Kickstart or Kill

Kickstart or Kill? Bringing Animated GIFs To Life

kill bill uma

Welcome to the first of a new series here at Betabeat. Each week we will highlight one Kickstarter project focused on technology and based in New York City. The idea is to discuss the merits of the project and dissect their approach to fundraising.

To kick things off we’ve got Physical GIF, a project that combines our favorite file type with the laser-based maker culture that percolates at places like NYC Resistor.

Treating GIFs like high-brow art isn’t a new concept, but it’s having a moment right now. Read More