Use this space to cheer the creator along, and talk to your fellow backers.
Have a question?
@𝙳𝚊𝚗𝚒𝚎𝚕: 𝚆𝚑𝚎𝚗 𝚠𝚒𝚕𝚕 𝚢𝚘𝚞 𝚋𝚎 𝚊𝚋𝚕𝚎 𝚝𝚘 𝚜𝚑𝚊𝚛𝚎 𝚠𝚒𝚝𝚑 𝚞𝚜, 𝚊𝚕𝚕 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚙𝚛𝚘𝚓𝚎𝚌𝚝 𝚊𝚜𝚜𝚎𝚝𝚜 (𝙸𝚗𝚍𝚞𝚜𝚝𝚛𝚒𝚊𝚕 𝙳𝚎𝚜𝚒𝚐𝚗, 𝚜𝚘𝚞𝚛𝚌𝚎 𝚌𝚘𝚍𝚎𝚜, 𝚜𝚞𝚙𝚙𝚕𝚒𝚎𝚛 𝚕𝚒𝚜𝚝, 𝙱𝙾𝙼, 𝚍𝚛𝚊𝚠𝚒𝚗𝚐𝚜, 𝚎𝚝𝚌.) 𝚊𝚜 𝚖𝚎𝚗𝚝𝚒𝚘𝚗𝚎𝚍 𝚒𝚗 𝚢𝚘𝚞𝚛 𝚄𝚙𝚍𝚊𝚝𝚎? Thanks...
Whatever you do is out of my control. Just complete the project and send me the bell.
@Daniel - you said in September "We would announce in case of failure" - but 9 months later all we get is a "legacy in the cloud." Can you post accounts to show where the money has gone please? Thanks
Apperently he scammed people before in Hungary. So he is just a very shady character.
Thanks for the feedback! I'm checking out Medium now.
@Lasse: the money is GONE... sadly... No chance of refunds :-(
Best we can hope for is to receive the plans, specifications and designs that Daniel describes in his last update.
@Tom: nice article!
I just shared it on Twitter and @-mentioned some financial news related channels.
Indeed it would get more exposure if you publish it on Medium and perhaps other popular (blogging) platforms.
Hi Daniel, and KickStarter.
Due to Danish law I give you until the 12th of July 2018 to deliver the Shoka Bell.
If you do not do so, consider my purchase of Shoka Bell cancelled and return my money.
@Tom: great writing! I am sure it will not get the exposure it should. You should consider publishing your article on medium.com.
I wanted to do something productive. I have a website, and I write commentary from time to time. I wrote this article about what people should know about Kickstarter. Feel free to share this link, and I appreciate any constructive criticism. (I don't write for a living, so I apologize about the "hack-writer" quality).
You have taken so much money from your backers, that, if there is insufficient funds to complete production, surely you should be looking at a bank loan or business loan or even a crowd funding project. It is unfair to take this amount of money from people that will see nothing in return. You were so positive at the outset, find some of that inner fire, grow a pair and fight for your product. It is surely too good to just let it die. Will we be seeing any of our money back if you don't bother to pursue this. It was your dream!
What hateful comments and unhelpful too
May i offer condolences for your losses. Both of your friend and of your confidence.
Next may I ask why you are putting our investment onto the cloud for anyone to cherry pick?
This is our investment, not your to give away.
Issue the "assets" exclusively to those who "own" them, the backers and allow us to complete the project.
Better still, get your mind back on the job and finish the project. Look for extra funding, angel investors, dragons den, another crowdfunding push.
There is no-one better to complete this than you, so get up, shake yourself off, and make it happen.
Make it the legacy of your dead friend. Rename it after him in his memory.
I'm pretty damn sure he would not have wanted you to sit back in your dispare and allow all that work and support go to waste.
Come on Daniel. Do your damndest!
@Eugene Do you really want to throw more money into this and take a chance in the odds that it's enough? If you scroll through the comments, I doubt you'll find anyone else sharing those sympathies.
Better to take that extra investment and spend it 3d printing and building your own from the released specs.
@Theo Thank you for not propagating the hate. It's a shame you've only experienced 50% fortune. It's been a while since I have run my own numbers, but I tend closer to 85% success.
Would an extra say $10 or $20 from us all be able to complete the project?
If so would this not be a better option?
We all went into the project expecting completion, so what really does it require now?
Please it may have been a hard road, but yourself and us will all be disappointed if the project is left in limbo.
I’ve been pretty outspoken here, as a few of you know or have seen. My thoughts on this update:
1. At least we got SOMETHING. Was there an apology? Not really, but he’s lacked empathy from the beginning.
2. It’s as we expected, they mismanaged the money and can’t produce as promised. I sort of got that feeling when they continually promoted themselves and reached out to multiple sources for additional revenue. The heavy reliance on advertising eventually takes its toll.
3. It’s good the stuff will be released in a Creative Commons thing so hopefully somebody benevolent can produce (although we will have to spend more money to get the product we were hoping to get originally...but it’ll still leave the door open for a fraud to try and step in which worries me).
It does leave one unanswered question though, what happened to the merger? Was that just a placeholder to keep us placated until now? Also, there were multiple folks involved in this venture. I understand one got hit and died (condolences Daniel, while I wish this product was completed I wouldn’t wish death upon you or your folks) but what about the others? Did they just quit? You also made many friends with sponsors across the EU and some parts of the USA. I suppose they couldn’t help bring this to fruition?
Anyways, as @Ace mentioned this is like the stock market. You are gambling your money to hope to get something out of it. It won’t prevent me from backing things in the future, but I’ll do my research to ensure the people behind whatever I’m backing are legit and have a strong base to fall back on to ensure the product gets completed. So far I’m 50/50 for products that have been delivered here, and I’ll make sure that next time I don’t fund something that’s promoted on my Instagram or Facebook without research.
It happens. And if you're up in arms about the matter, you probably didn't read the terms of service when you signed up.
It's like buying stocks. If you can't afford to never see the money again and receive no fruits of the labor, you shouldn't be spending it.
This isn't my first rodeo, but it's apparent that it is a first for some of the backers. You took a chance, and you lost. If you don't complain to the casino that you lost all your money from bad luck, you shouldn't do it here.
And yeah, I'll get some hate for my brutal honesty. Some of you will never back another campaign again. But that doesn't mean my message isn't the truth.
Second, now everybody can use it to find funding and complete the project.
I think it is great to put everything in creative Commons. First it show complete transparency since we will have access to exactly what have been done.
It was fun waking up to read that my money has been stolen. Especially after we have gone months and months at a time without an update.
There was no apology or answer or plan of action - just a sob story about a man who wasn’t paying attention on his bicycle.
Daniel Falus is a coward. I would like to say much worse things, but Kickstarter advises against that in their Terms & Conditions. Just like how they advise against Creators from defrauding their customers by failing to follow through on their projects and commitment.
I am hopeful that Daniel will provide a better update that explains how we can get our money back, but that is unlikely.
@Ben Moore: Good point(s)... But sadly, Kickstarter won't take any responsibility to enforce those Terms & Conditions :-(
@Ben Moore: Good point(
Here are the KS T&Cs relating to project failure:
If a creator is unable to complete their project and fulfill rewards, they’ve failed to live up to the basic obligations of this agreement. To right this, they must make every reasonable effort to find another way of bringing the project to the best possible conclusion for backers. A creator in this position has only remedied the situation and met their obligations to backers if:
• they post an update that explains what work has been done, how funds were used, and what prevents them from finishing the project as planned;
• they work diligently and in good faith to bring the project to the best possible conclusion in a timeframe that’s communicated to backers;
• they’re able to demonstrate that they’ve used funds appropriately and made every reasonable effort to complete the project as promised;
they’ve been honest, and have made no material misrepresentations in their communication to backers; and
• they offer to return any remaining funds to backers who have not received their reward (in proportion to the amounts pledged), or else explain how those funds will be used to complete the project in some alternate form.
The creator is solely responsible for fulfilling the promises made in their project. If they’re unable to satisfy the terms of this agreement, they may be subject to legal action by backers.
So I think we'd like those points addressed.
I just received the email as well and am quite disappointed. I know it's not always easy to build up a company and that many things can go wrong but just jumping off and telling the backers, that you give up is not the thing we were expecting! The mail sounded to me like; Thank you all for the money but I'm gone forever! Here you have all the details, plans and source code for the software we have so far, do whatever you want with it. Not really the way people should get treated. I'm truly pissed off.
What a dumb update today!
Full of pathetic pathos and not a single sign of remorse and empathy or will.
Shut this silly KS down now, and blacklist everyone ever involved.
Stealing is a crime. Even if it is done in faith.
To everyone: I (want to) believe that the Shoka Bell initially started out of GOOD intentions.
It's just that it turned out to be so very, very poorly managed... especially towards the end :'-(
The last (and probably final?) update we just got from Daniel, should have come *many months* earlier.
That could have prevented a lot of angry messages, fraud allegations, etc. ?
Surely the disappointment would still be there. But the long periods of silence... didn't exactly help (enormous understatement!)
Anyway, looks like not all is lost, just yet. Hopefully some smart manufacturer will take (the best parts out of) the Shoka Bell designs and all the work that has already been done. And make it become a reality.
The sad part is that, even in such a 'best case' scenario, we would have to pay for such a product "again" (I mean that until now, with this Kickstarter project, we have only paid for -most of the- research, development and promotion costs).
Still I hope to see the Bell become real one day in the (not too distant) future!
I think the US government & the FBI need to shut down kickstarter & indiegogo websites
This is a good platform (kickstarter) to let people with ill intention to set up something to source fund and spend it on their personal luxuries. After 3 years, all fund used up, come out and informed the backers that due to poor planning, the project had to be put off. Sad to say, this may not be kickstarter fault but we as backers are not being protected as well, collecting admin fee from successful project and left us in the lurch. I shall take this as my lesson and shall warn my friends and relatives with my experience.
I'm very upset with how Kickstarter handled this fraud. They did not do anything! This elementary destroyed my believe in Kickstarter! I will never back anything again!
Just got an email that everything the company ever did will become public under a creative commons license. This is what we get 3 years after backing a project. They swallowed $200,000 over the course of three years and then we get something (a year and a half later than we were promised), that anyone who didn't spend a dime can get.
I had faith in you and now I have lost $109.
What disappointed me the most is the around the same time there was a company calls SmartHalo from my city that has a similar product and I found Shoka bell more appealing for different reasons but SmartHalo start delivering (https://www.smarthalo.bike/fr/design/)
I bet on the wrong horse here :(
The fact that I didn't choose the local project hurt me most :(
Sorry SmartHalo, I should I bet on you. #shameonme :)
This site should be changed so it no longer accepts investments and doesn't say "preorder now".
I understand why folks are upset about not getting the bell and I am impressed with those who put in the effort to figure out what happened and report back here.
As a previous small business owner, I can assure you that not all business ideas work out.
I have enjoyed making my small investments in new products and different ideas through Kick Starter. Out of the five products I have supported this is the only failure. I feel I am always taking a risk that I won't get the product promised. If we are all honest, we know that the Shoka Bell concept was a huge leap and likely not possible, certainly not for our investment the price point.
Go take a bike ride and move on. Cheers.
Kickstarter should at least provide backers with a place for them to comment on the project and its responsible person (for example, Amazon publishes the customer's comments) because Kickstarter has already charged service fees. In order to provide pressure on Kickstarter.com to provide such services, similar to this opinion, I believe it should be widely disseminated.
Never did get my Shoka bell. What's up with this KS now? Is it dead?
so we gonna sue them? fraud ? next steps ?
Frustrated here too. KS stopped replying to my questions.
There is no way KS is making it SO easy to steal money and say "despite our best efforts and the best efforts of a creator, projects will fail to come together as planned".
This bozo, Daniel, never had the intention to deliver the goods. It's obvious from his spotty updates.
There was never KS's "our best efforts" nor the F head's "best efforts".
WE DEMAND ANSWERS
I had contact with Maform design. They can't reach Daniel Falus either and have the same info as we have from the updates. They're also negatively affected by this project. :-(
I had the same "copy paste reply" from the EU. I'm afraid the merger never took place. Too late... How about the folks who were in his core team (look below at the core team picture om campaignpage in happier times)?
The company Maform Design, managed by Peter Molnar, was surely involved and maybe they know more. http://www.maformdesign.com/references-1/2016/10/4/shoka-bell
Same reply. Let's find the name of the company who merged with him.
Or let's simply find him
I complained to the EU about Shoka, since it received EU funding through the Horizon2020 project, and they just told me that from their perspective, there is nothing to wrong:
"You reported that the company SHOKA had failed to provide a product ordered and paid for by investors in its 'Kickstarter' project, leading you to suspect it of fraud, and you warned of the risk that SHOKA might equally have committed fraud in the Horizon 2020 ('H2020') project number 782040, in which it received an EU grant of EUR 50 000.
OLAF learned in its selection, however, that the H2020 project had concerned a feasibility study rather than the delivery of a product, and that it was assessed as having fully achieved its objectives."
That leaves Karma as the only way to make this right.
Hi all... I received an e-mail reply from the European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF). I'll quote the most important parts below:
"OLAF decided not to open an investigation into the matter, on grounds of insufficient suspicion of the existence of fraud, corruption or other illegality with an impact on the EU budget."
"You reported that the company SHOKA had failed to provide a product ordered and paid for by investors in its 'Kickstarter' project, leading you to suspect it of fraud...
They're getting away with the Kickstarter failure. Sucks to be us (backers). Let's just move on, I guess. :-/
Turns out CRUNCHBASE is not the company that invested in Shoka Bell... sorry for the misinformation.
Sent this, request all copy and paste.
It’s come to the attention of Shoka Bell backers on Kickstarter that you have merged with their company. We, as the initial investors, are requesting an update on the progress of the Shoka Bell project. It’s been over 6 months since the proprietor of the ShokaBell product, Daniel Falus, has provided any updates to those that provided him funding. As the newly acquired/ merged company of/with Shoka Bell, we request an update on the product as we are responsible for the initial funding of the product and the merge that’s followed henceforth.
Now that you are associated with this organization, please provide us with information regarding the product we supported. Thank you.
I found it.. and wrote them too... You should all do the same... PLEASE. Strength in numbers!!
564 Market Street
San Francisco, CA 94104
does anyone know the name of the company that Shoka Bell merged with?
I got a reply from Kickstarter as follows.....
Our mission is to provide a place where anyone can bring creative projects to life. Our biggest expectation of creators, especially when a project is delayed, is that they communicate with backers through updates or messages. If that hasn’t happened, we share in your frustration and disappointment.
It’s important to remember that most projects on Kickstarter are in the early stages of development. That makes it hard to predict timelines – a lot can change from prototype to production. It’s not uncommon for refinements and modifications to push back a project’s estimated delivery date. It’s all part of the inherent risk of any creative process.
We try to minimize that risk through all-or-nothing funding, which allows the collective voice of the people to decide which projects reach their goal. We review projects to make sure they adhere to our rules, support creators as they work through their projects, practice careful governance, and use anti-fraud filtering.
In the situation where projects don’t come together as planned, we make ourselves available to creators to help however we can, and we encourage them to be as open as possible with their backers about the obstacles they face.
But sometimes despite our best efforts and the best efforts of a creator, projects will fail to come together as planned. We strive to constantly learn from this, and to make sure that expectations are appropriately set for backers. Trust and integrity are a cornerstone for what we do.
If you have feedback on ways that we can continue to improve this experience, please let us know. We take your feedback seriously.
PLEASE everyone... write to Kickstarter and express your concerns to firstname.lastname@example.org
We have to put a stop to this! How can someone grab over $200k and not answer to anyone. I ask myself 'why not'? Its easy money.
The following letter was sent to Kickstarter. If they don't pursue this guy, I suggest we file a Class Action Lawsuit again Daniel Falus and Kickstarter!!!
I can see from the many comments on the Shoka Bell page that Daniel Falus has gone silent. What roll or responsibility does Kickstarter play? We were all informed about 7 months ago that Shoka Bell was merging or being purchased by another company. There has been no update or communication since. All backers are obviously very upset, me included. It would be good to know Kickstarter has our (the investors) backs. Further, if this campaign is unable to fulfill its obligations, how do we go about getting our money back?
Does Kickstarter help? Does Kickstarter have lawyers who will pursue this case? I'm assuming the guy has broken many (if not all) the Kickstarter rules and regulations. Furthermore, his campaign raised over $200,000. I can't imagine Kickstarter would allow this guy to make off with all this money, without consequence. After all, if Kickstarter does not pursue this guy, it opens the flood gates for others to do the same.
I'm looking forward to hearing back from you.
Thank you in advance,
(one of 1673 backers)
So what is the next step? Hunt him down?