Zano, a drone project on Kickstarter, appeared to embrace it’s own demise. A month after announcing its intent to ship the Zano drones, the Torquing Group (Zano creators), announced it was heading into receivership and all was lost. Zano was the largest UK Kickstarter campaign ever.
Now, in a bit of a twist, Kickstarter has hired Mark Harris to dig into the details surrounding the spectacular collapse of the Zano project.
In a post on Medium, Harris called it an “unusual commission”;
“I’ve accepted a commission to write a story about the collapse of the Zano drone project on Kickstarter,its largest project ever to have been funded inEurope…This time, however, I’ve been commissioned by Kickstarter itself. The company wants to help the backers of this failed project get the information they are entitled to under their agreement with the project creator. They would like to uncover the story of Zano, from its inception to the present, and decided that the best way to do that was to hire a journalist. The primary audience for the story is the 12,000+ backers of the project, although I will also make the story publicly available once I’ve completed it, most likely in the middle of January.”
BBC’s Rory Cellan-Jones, has done an admirable job of covering the debacle having apparently backed the campaign. Of course, none of this is a salve to the thousands of backers who rightly felt cheated by the Torquing Group and a bit misled by Kickstarter.
If you are a backer or employee of Zano / Torquing, Harris has posted his email address so you may contact him directly: firstname.lastname@example.org. It will be interesting to hear what he uncovers and what Kickstarter may learn by Zano’s demise.