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Kickstarter Project Creators Beware!

Moderator: VaporStarter

by josh@joshphoto.net » Mon Nov 18, 2013 10:04 pm

My project was also effected. He just initiated the chargeback to me this week.
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by Evan S. » Wed Dec 04, 2013 8:23 pm

Hi everyone,

Encik Farhan pledged $1,100 to my project after I'd exceeded my goal. Luckily, I hadn't spent any of my budget before I heard about the scam (thanks Anarchy Enterprises), and the chargeback didn't put my fundraising total below my goal.

I'm planning on returning the money, and will post an update about how that goes. I am also planning on asking Kickstarter to refund their fees on this portion of my budget. I think they have a moral obligation to do this, and I will happily draw attention to the issue however I can if they refuse.

Kickstarter's responses to my emails have not been substantive. While they've assured me they're taking the issue seriously, the latest email simply referred me to Amazon payments. Here's a quote from it:

"We are continuing to work with Amazon Payments regarding this issue. They have informed us that they will be taking certain actions for affected creators on their end. Please get in touch with them via the link below in order to clarify your particular situation."

Well, the link was just the standard customer service link, and I called and talked to a rep who hadn't heard anything about this. The "certain actions" Kickstarter refers to don't seem to exist. You can challenge the dispute just like any other Amazon Payments user, but, it seems, nothing's been done to address the peculiar nature of the Encik Farhan scam.

Kickstarter needs to address the fact that this weirdness occurred via their platform. They should, at the very least, refund the fees they've taken on fraudulent pledges. They should also consider creating a fund to support creators who spent money they raised in good faith to complete their projects and then were asked to pay back. Perhaps they can do a Kickstarter campaign themselves for this purpose!

I do think this issue is meaty enough for a good article in Wired or a similar publication. If I had more time, I'd even try to write it! But there are many interesting issues here.

Has anyone challenged Encik Farhan's chargeback? What was the outcome?
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by KBB » Tue Dec 10, 2013 6:19 pm

"Encik Farhan" also pledged $2000 to my project after I'd reached my goal, so while it didn't jeopardize my campaign, I did spend more money with the certainty it would balanced out by the contributions.
I was about to create his reward when I got the chargeback dispute, so at least I didn't spend anything on him.
The pledge still shows in my Amazon Payments account, but I can't access it.


Since it's been awhile since any of us have heard from Kickstarter and Amazon, perhaps we could remind them in tandem that we're waiting. It's easy to dismiss us as individual creators, but as a group we might get their attention. 158 messages at once would probably get their notice.

I'm not happy to just have my Kickstarter fees taken care of. Amazon really screwed up and now we have to pay the price?

Has there been any talk of legal action? We're a reasonably large group...
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by nuchallenger » Tue Feb 18, 2014 4:52 am

Will definitely keep a look out. I think I remember seeing this character's name pop up more than a few times.
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by RobertEarlSutterIII » Wed Mar 19, 2014 3:13 am

What other names has he gone by?
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by philipzeplin » Sat Apr 05, 2014 1:22 pm

It's fantastic that a thread like this is made. I found it before we started our first project, it's certainly good to be aware that these types of people are out there.
It sucks, though, that you can't really do more about it.
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by RobertEarlSutterIII » Sat Apr 05, 2014 4:02 pm

It's like, why would you do that, after someone's goal had been reached? It cant be sabotage, cause the goal was already met. Its like they are mentally ill maybe? Drunk?
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by TranslatingDreams » Sat May 03, 2014 10:27 am

Very useful thread - if not a little worrying, I'd not even considered the potential for scam backers on KS, this is something I'll keep an eye out for. Thanks!
Explore the power of your dreams... http://kck.st/R1hhZr
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by johnnydaly » Sat May 03, 2014 11:25 pm

Interesting thanks for sharing!
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by MsQuickTrick » Thu May 15, 2014 10:26 pm

Thanks for the heads up. I wonder have any new names popped up or new issues like this?

Tess
https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/ms ... n=0ec0e22d
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