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Kickstarter’s cofounders step down – A worrying future for crowdfunders?

Kickstarter announced today that cofounders Kerry Chen and Charles Adler will no longer be involved in the day-to-day operations but will instead be involved as chairman and advisor.

The blog post tries to reassure the readers but the way it is introduced is  worrying for crowdfunders and backers alike. As a platform used by dozens of thousands of creative who trust it for their future projects, we have to wonder why it wasn’t announced before. It’s very similar to the way the Blackberry cofounders stepped down and were thanked for their role… and we know the result, now Blackberry is just a shadow of its past glory.

Kerry Chen and Charles Alder shaped the DNA of the platform, with a mission to fuel creatives and support the maker economy. They are thus behind the platform’s success, and why it’s leading in terms of numbers in front of other competitors. The new CEO, Yancey Strickler, is said to be from the company’s ranks, and has taken various roles, but the following questions still rise:

  • Was the company pushed by its investors to be bolder, more commercial?
  • Were the co-founders shown the door by investors?
  • Is kickstarter going to change its mission to fuel creatives and try to go into equity crowdfunding, as well industries that are currently not on the site (health, firearms, software projects…)?

Those questions are key – if not, creatives and artists should start looking seriously to one of the other 800 crowdfunding platforms available out there.

  • Theory Georgiou

    How about they are simply ready to move on to other things and the company is fully functional without them?

    • admin

      Hi, thanks for the comment. Companies do change, and sometimes for the worse. Given Kickstarter’s position, it’s simply natural that questions are asked

  • Robert MacArthur Doolittle Jr

    Doesn’t look like the reporter even tried to contact anyone at Kickstarter to ask the “important” questions he puts forth. I don’t see any merit to a story where somebody just points out their opinion without actually doing their job of reporting the facts….

    • admin

      Hi, this is an editorial not news.

  • John J. Coveyou

    Robert and Theory, I absolutely agree with you. The media is always looking for something juicy because this catches our attention and get more “views” and “clicks.” Those questions posed are amateur: Journalism 101 – How to Stir up a News Worthy Article Where Doesn’t Exist. The company should be interviewed or other facts should be presented before such claims are made. On another point, there are incredible legal ramification that must be considered if KS wanted to get into health, firearms etc or equity crowdfunding. Without specific information given from KS I think this is very irresponsible to stir up these rumor just to get your article read and your name out there. And the Blackberry example doesn’t work. Blackberry was providing tangible products that needed constant upgrades and advancement. KS is fully functional the way is and people will continue to use because it has one of the greatest crowfunding followings (which is vital is you want to crowdfund) but it doesn’t need to keep up with Apple and all the rest.