Having a social justice warrior meme group has brought people into my life who are serious about their politics and also fucking hilarious.
Kickstarter is pretty amazing when you think about it: 100 or so cool dudes and dudettes in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, helping to make people's creative dreams come true.
If you're not familiar with the increasingly popular online fundraising platform, it can basically be summarized as a way for people who need support for artistic or technological projects to request money and get the word out about their undertaking. Projects of all sizes are welcome, and since 2009, some amazing concepts have been brought to fruition with the help of friends and strangers, many of whom receive thank-you perks when the all-or-nothing funding goals are reached.
Kickstarter passes no judgment on projects — it isn't hard to find campaigns that you definitely wouldn't give your money to, but it's feasible that someone with different tastes very well might. However, Kickstarter does have some rules the projects must adhere to:
- "Projects must create something to share with others."
- "Projects can’t fundraise for charity, offer financial incentives, or involve prohibited items."
- "Projects must be honest and clearly presented."
Needless to say, these rules sometimes get broken before the community managers can catch them — especially the first rule. There are some totally selfish Kickstarters at any given moment, some more self-aware than others.
I've found a few rule-breaking Kickstarter projects I'd like to share with you, as well as a few that technically follow the rules but just made me scratch my head and mouth "WTF" at my monitor; because some projects can't even be chalked up to different tastes — they're just stupid and don't deserve to take up space on Kickstarter's server.
I want to draw my girlfriend
Jayden is a young man in Australia who loves his girlfriend and thinks it would be really romantic if he could draw her, but he . . . Well, I'll let him tell you himself in one long run-on sentence:
well basically I am trying to learn to draw but i have next to no supplies and all I really want Is to see my beautiful girl smiling all i ever want is for her to be happy and romantic hand made things make her the happiest we have been together nearly 2 years and her birthday is in April and I really want to know how to draw with some level of skill by then so i can give it to her as a heart felt gift and so thank you to anyone who would help me out on this.
He seems like a sweet guy, but his Kickstarter breaks the first rule of Kickstarter: You don't talk about Kickstarter. Wait — no. You must create something to share with others. I'm not sure "my girlfriend" counts as others; although he does promise to email practice sketches to anyone who donates. And hey, he's only looking for $20. Maybe I'm being too hard on wee Jayden.
The 'throw an egg at my brother' Challenge!
The Farrow brothers have a jolly good idea! For every pound (that's British-speak for $1.53 — today, at least) donated, they will buy and set aside an egg to be thrown at them by the benefactors themselves.
Sitting under what I hope are their own baby photos, the brothers explain in a pun-filled, three-and-a-half-minute (much, much longer than it needs to be) video how they'd like this to be a record-breaking event that takes place at an iconic London landmark.
So how many eggs are they hoping to have thrown at them in public? A hundred? Two hundred? Nope — they're asking for £15,000. That's nearly $23,000! They indicate that some of the money they'd raise would go toward renting a video camera to "capture all the gooey glory in super SlooOooOow-motion," but that's still at least 10,000 eggs that could be eaten by hungry people that would, instead, be thrown at two brothers, at least one of which is definitely high.
It makes me want to throw things at them. Not eggs, though. I won't give them that satisfaction.
NoFuglies.com - A Dating Website - "Not Beat, Let's Meet!"
You know what online dating needs more of? Superficiality.
Thank goodness Bill Cooper is here to bring us his self-proclaimed masterpiece, NoFuglies.com, where the slogan is "Not Beat, Let's Meet!" (Fuglies, if you're blessedly not familiar with the term, is a portmanteau meaning "fucking uglies.")
I actually think this Kickstarter breaks the "Projects must be honest and clearly presented" rule. If it were honest, it would say, "This is a dating site for blatantly shallow egotists," but that sentence is mysteriously absent from the description. However, in a satisfying, schadenfreude-tastic twist, there are only a few hours left and no one has donated any money.
Oh, and since you're definitely wondering, Bill Cooper isn't just the creator of NoFuglies — he's also a member.
Taj Mahal made out of Cola
This actually sounds kind of creative and interesting at first glance, but a few words in, you start to realize Julien Talbot just wants you to fund his soda addiction.
I drink a lot of cola, and when I say a lot, I mean a freaking lot of cola. So this one time we had around 1850 empty cans and we thought we should do something out of them, and the first thing that came to our mind? The great and mighty Taj Mahal. But all those cans ended up moisty and pretty disgusting, so we'd like to start back, but right now, I don't work where I used to and I don't have the money to buy the cans . . .
I'm not sure who "we" is — maybe a friend he's built from empty, "moisty" soda cans?
Anyway, I'm not gonna help this guy's teeth rot.
For a smile . . . it is
Mysterious title, right? Honestly, it's not much clearer after reading the description:
We've spent sufficient time in generating gadgets, entertainment and money. Let's go outside. Put a smile on someone's face. Say something nice or funny. Give a compliment, or greet them with their name.
So, wait — lemme get this straight. You're asking people to pay you a euro so they can go make someone smile? Can't they just do that without, you know, giving you money? Other than the satisfaction of making someone smile (maybe), what's in it for the donator?
All backers receive a personal DIGITAL copy of the logo.
Oh, you mean this DIGITAL logo that I was able to grab from the Kickstarter page without giving you a dollar or trying to make someone smile?
find phone service
The existing existence of already existent find-your-phone apps isn't going to deter Ryan Scaler, oh no. Ryan wants to create a newer, better, vaguer, and definitely more dangerous find-your-phone app.
I couldn't get the video to play on any browser, so all I know about the app is that . . .
someone loses their phone they go on the site or app or call a 800 number and a providers picks up the ticket then collects the phone.
I literally have no idea what that means, but it makes me nervous. What he's written under the "Risks and challenges" section makes me even nervous-er.
liability for myself if the providers hurt someone it could fall on me. gonna need a lawyer to figure all that out.
Oh. Okay. I'm gonna slowly back away now.
Creation of a Beast
Seventeen-year-old Lyle Ferringer has a vision.
I want to take a guitar and mix it with parts of animals to make a really cool guitar. It will have fur, antlers, a skull of some sort, and a tail.
Can't picture that? Lyle has drawn a diagram.
You know what? I change my mind. This is awesome. Give Lyle your money and claim your signed poster of the finished Beast.
What's the most ridiculous Kickstarter project you've ever seen?