Sage Lazzaro, writing in the New York Observer, tells a not unprecedented tale of a crowdfunded project gone horribly wrong. On this occasion the CST-01 watch, which appears to have died a death without ever shipping a single product, at a loss to investors of over $1m.
I've said it before, but crowdfunding is an exercise in risk. Whereas getting investment to build a product through traditional means requires some effort and investigative rigour on the part of investors, crowdfunders are taking the word of the product's developers pretty much at face value.
That's not to say that crowdfunding isn't a valid way of getting a product to production, its just that as these type of projects become more popular its inevitable that there will be those who use them as a vehicle for fraud.
In the case if Central Standard Time it appears incompetence rather than dishonesty was the cause of the failure. Nevertheless the story that Lazzaro tells should serve as a warning to anyone lightly thinking of investing their own hard-earned.