A minor controversy erupted in the CobbleBot forums this past week after the project apparently cancelled all USD$1 pledges.
It’s not clear why the fledgling 3D printer project took this step, but participants speculated it had to do with comments. Removal of the pledges meant those backers were unable to continue participating in discussions.
One commenter, “Matt” said:
This Kickstarter has had the worst spam of comments I have ever seen! Whether it be trolling, other 3D printer advertising/negative comments or just pure hate towards the project.
If that’s the case, then shutting down those who paid USD$1 simply to disrupt might be a good idea. On the other hand, one of the purposes of a Kickstarter campaign is to gain feedback from the public. It’s quite reasonable and actually desirable to receive feedback from someone who Did Not buy a product. This is critical information for designers and manufacturers, who otherwise might be able to rectify issues.
Update: Apparently the move was directed solely at "disruptive" commenters. CobbleBot now says:
**CORRECTION OF FALSE INFORMATION IN POST ABOVE - FROM COBBLEBOT**
All $1 pledges were not refunded. In fact 95% of the $1 pledges remain. Those who found their money refunded, including individuals who were not $1 backers - all had been extremely disruptive to the point that other supporters found it necessary to email complaints about them to our team (and a few who crossed certain lines and called our homes, etc...). We have not only a right, but an obligation to the Cobblebot community to foster a positive and supportive environment. Those who can't act professionally and speak to everyone with respect are not welcome. That is all that we will say on the matter.
Via CobbleVerse (Hat tip to Stijn)