Just because a crowdfunded project reaches its donation goals doesn't mean the project will ever actually come to fruition. Instead, plenty of projects—including some that receive a lot of media hype—are stalled or perhaps canceled altogether. Ars Technica takes a look at cases like myIDkey, which pulled in $473,333 on Kickstarter. The project, a USB dongle that handles your passwords, was denied expected funding from additional investors; as of last month, the project was also reportedly facing a cease-and-desist letter over branding.
In another Kickstarter crisis, backers of a role-playing game that far exceeded its funding goals were informed earlier this year, by email, that "this project is dead. For now. Possibly forever." The creator blamed it on an artist involved. So what happens next? In this case, Ars Technica reports, backers told Washington's attorney general, who has sued a company that allegedly didn't produce a crowdfunded playing-card project. Such legal action is, however, rare; one hurdle is that backers don't get each other's contact information. But they can communicate using Kickstarter's "comments" section, and commenters have joined forces to keep track of what creators are up to—even posting the phone number of one creator on the site. (Read more crowdfunding stories.)