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Kickstarter moving to blockchain


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Staffan

Legend
Doesn't blockchain eat up significant electrical power? I know something related to cryptocurrency is a significant power drain, and that's the last thing we need when trying to reduce greenhouse gasses. Might get me to completely swear off kickstarting.
My understanding is that while the biggest power drain is cryptocurrency mining (I've seen it described as "What if leaving your car idling could solve sudokus that you could then trade for heroin?"), just making transactions is also much more costly in terms of energy than traditional methods.

The reason is that if I'm using a traditional bank and I'm paying you money, there are basically two databases/ledgers involved: my account and your account. The energy cost of that is pretty much negligible But if we're using crypto, the change has to be recorded in every instance of the blockchain, which takes a lot more energy (depending on how wide spread it is).
 


UngainlyTitan

Hero
Supporter
My understanding is that while the biggest power drain is cryptocurrency mining (I've seen it described as "What if leaving your car idling could solve sudokus that you could then trade for heroin?"), just making transactions is also much more costly in terms of energy than traditional methods.

The reason is that if I'm using a traditional bank and I'm paying you money, there are basically two databases/ledgers involved: my account and your account. The energy cost of that is pretty much negligible But if we're using crypto, the change has to be recorded in every instance of the blockchain, which takes a lot more energy (depending on how wide spread it is).
This is not quite right. It is not the updating the blockchain that takes a lot of energy, it is the crypto-token mining (that authorises one to edit the blockchain) that takes all the energy.

They (Kickstarter) are not planning on installing crypto mining software on backers hardware are they?
 

Staffan

Legend
This is not quite right. It is not the updating the blockchain that takes a lot of energy, it is the crypto-token mining (that authorises one to edit the blockchain) that takes all the energy.
That's what I said. The mining is what makes it take up enormous amounts of energy, but even without the mining just making transactions takes a significant amount, compared to traditional transactions.
 


Yora

Legend
I've talked with some people about this who seem to know a bit about the technological aspects of all of this, and their assumption was that switching to a blockchain system could be a way to improve the reliability of internal infrastructure when dealing with server outages or connection issues. Which to me sounds like it makes some kind of sense.
But it has of course nothing to do with "creativity", "backer contribution" or "bringing people together". Which really isn't to say that it's wrong. Those announcement are just alphabet soup buzzwords to impress investors.
 

Umbran

Mod Squad
Staff member
I've talked with some people about this who seem to know a bit about the technological aspects of all of this, and their assumption was that switching to a blockchain system could be a way to improve the reliability of internal infrastructure when dealing with server outages or connection issues. Which to me sounds like it makes some kind of sense.

If, in fact, that was the issue, they could say so pretty easily - "With the rise of some very high-volume projects, we have searched for ways to improve reliability and found...". The story that they are trying to make the system solid, secure, and reliable would be a good sell.

The fact that they don't, and that they keep to empty marketingspeak, is an indicator that reliability isn't really the reason.
 

doctorhook

Adventurer
The makers of Coyote and Crow, a recent million-dollar RPG project on Kickstarter, sent out an e-mail yesterday, saying that this move by Kickstarter means they'll have to take their crowdfunding efforts elsewhere.

Yeah, that email was where I heard about this. I immediately went looking for more info, because I surely don’t understand why Kickstarter is doing this. Still don’t, tbh.
 


J.Quondam

CR 1/8
Yeah, that email was where I heard about this. I immediately went looking for more info, because I surely don’t understand why Kickstarter is doing this. Still don’t, tbh.
I'm about 97% certain that some exec somewhere has decided that blockchain somehow equates to easy money. That's just a guess, of course, but it meshes pretty well with most every other "application" of blockchain that's been publicized.
 

Ulfgeir

Hero
If, in fact, that was the issue, they could say so pretty easily - "With the rise of some very high-volume projects, we have searched for ways to improve reliability and found...". The story that they are trying to make the system solid, secure, and reliable would be a good sell.

The fact that they don't, and that they keep to empty marketingspeak, is an indicator that reliability isn't really the reason.
As far as I could tell from reading what they have on their page atm, I can't find anything that would be a clear advantage for anyone. not even themselves. At best, it appears that it will help with keeping ledgers of NFT's based upon my understanding of blockchain and cryptocurrencies.

It does reek of marketing speak for venture capitalists, and pyramid schemes. It is a "solution" in search of a problem.
 


Ulfgeir

Hero
I sent them a mail where I voiced certain concerns regarding their plans. Got a regurgitated version of the info on the homepage back. Not ideal to say the least. It was also sent way too fast to be anything other than an automated response. The only things they pointed there was that backers/creators wouldn't notice anything different. Backers could pay with credit/debit cards, and creators would get ther money in fiat currencies as before (US Dollars, British Pounds, Euros etc)

I really hope that a human actually looks the feedback they get, but I am sceptical. I know from experience that normal support-issues are handled by a human, but those go to a different mail...
 

Ryujin

Legend
I sent them a mail where I voiced certain concerns regarding their plans. Got a regurgitated version of the info on the homepage back. Not ideal to say the least. It was also sent way too fast to be anything other than an automated response. The only things they pointed there was that backers/creators wouldn't notice anything different. Backers could pay with credit/debit cards, and creators would get ther money in fiat currencies as before (US Dollars, British Pounds, Euros etc)

I really hope that a human actually looks the feedback they get, but I am sceptical. I know from experience that normal support-issues are handled by a human, but those go to a different mail...
You think that they'd be a little more prone to listening to criticism, after the Patreon debacle.
 


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