Is Indiegogo A Scam?

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Crowdfunding

Indiegogo Review

Name: Indiegogo
Website: https://www.indiegogo.com
Price: Free to sign up and create a campaign
Owners: Danae Ringelmann, Slava Rubin, Eric Schell
Overall Rank: 7.8 out of 10

Indiegogo – Product Overview

Is Indiegogo a scam? What is Idiegogo?

This company was founded back in 2008 in the greatest city by the bay, San Francisco. Indiegogo was a real trailblazer, as it was one of the first companies to offer crowdfunding. Crowdfunding helps people get much-needed money to further their movie, idea, business, charity, book and just about whatever and I do mean whatever, as you will see later. Famous actors, like James Franco, used Indiegogo to fund his Palo Alto Stories, Indie film for example.

Indiegogo logo

Indiegogo is the platform from which entrepreneurs can create a campaign to raise money and to have contributors (donors, investors or customers) fund a campaign, by donating money. Whereby, Indiegogo takes a slice of the pie, a 5% cut from contributors donations. If thru a credit card the CC takes 3% and $0.30. With an astounding 15 million visitors to their site a month, they sure do have the eyeballs to help get your campaign funded.

As you would imagine this is just ripe with the people wanting money for fictitious ideas or scams or just pure laziness. On the other hand, it is filled with positive socially benefiting ideas that need to be funded to make this a better world to live in. The yin and yang, the good and the bad. Revolutionary ideas and platforms are just plagued with scams as well as legitimate social causes.

Perks

What do people get for contributing to a campaign? Well that varies, as each campaign offers something different. Perks can be in all forms, sizes, and prices.There are rules as some things that can’t be used as a perk.indiegogo donate logo

Some examples of perks.

  • Public acknowledgment
  • A thank you note.
  • A part in a movie.
How It Works

There is basically a three-step approach to get a campaign going til completion.

  1. Pre-launch
  2. Crowdfunding
  3. Marketplace
Some Examples of Successful Campaigns At Indiegogo

An example of a successful pitch video that was funded at Indiegogo.

 

  • Let’s Build a Goddamn Tesla Museum $1,370,461.00 raised
  • A bullied bus driver money for a vacation $703,123 raised.
  • Skully Smart Motorcycle Helmet $2,445,739 raised.
  • Save Lakota Sacred Land
  • Solar Roadways $2,200,341 raised.
  • Raised Money for Hurricane Sandy survivors.

The Good & The Bad

The Good:

  • Flexible Funding – This is where if you don’t meet your goal, you still get to keep whatever money you did raise. Whereas some crowdfunding, it is all or nothing approach which is called Fixed Funding, if you don’t reach your set goal, you get no of the money. As long as you can fulfill on your perks and
  • Allows you to accept PayPal payments and credit cards. But going to be hit with the PayPal 3 to 5% fee from them.
  • Little to no rules. Which allows you to be crowdfunding as quickly as possible.
  • Generosity.com was launched to help people raise money for emergencies, nonprofits, medical treatments and expenses, social causes, or other life events. As they take no cut for their platform fee. So more money is available to the cause.
  • A great and fantastic platform to get important projects done with the help of conscientious people willing to donate their money.
  • Easy to create campaigns to help you raise money.
  • One-click social media integration feature, that readily shares with all your social media pages.

The Bad:

  • People asking for money that don’t have a serious idea or plan and obviously are just wanting money to be given to them. The biggest reason this is perceived a scam. iDubbzTV on YouTube hysterically and intellectually calls out these individuals in which he calls Indiegogo Excrement and also does one on Kickstarter, called Kickstarter Crap. Highly recommended.
  • Indiegogo makes money off of scams campaigns as well as legit campaigns because they take the 5% cut from all donations. So in theory, the more scams they allow, the more money they take in. Thereby biting the hand that feeds you.
  • Accepts all projects without review. Ripe for people wanting to take advantage of other people.
  • The hard part is getting people awareness about your campaign.
  • People copy ideas from legitimate campaigns and just change the names in an effort to get money.

 

Indiegogo Alternatives

  • Kickstarter
  • GoFundMe
  • YouCaring.com
  • CrowdRise
  • DonorsChoose.org
  • Kiva
  • Giveforward
  • RocketHub
  • Peerbackers

Who is Indiegogo for?

For anybody, for whatever reason, you can create a campaign at Indiegogo in the hopes of having money donated to you. Yep, anybody. It’s great for raising money for social programs that would otherwise get no funding. This is the true shining beautiful part of Indiegogo, being a part of a greater cause and contributing to it.

Indiegogo Tools & Training

The training and tools to get your campaign off the ground at Indiegogo are vast. They have a pretty thorough training from running a campaign to contributing to a campaign. They even have a downloadable free Film Handbook to help with your video production.

Indiegogo Support

Support is easily accessible at Indiegogo, and the various forms of support are all here. So it has all of the normal forms of support.

My Final Opinion of Indiegogo

Is Indiegogo a scam? Obviously, Indiegogo isn’t a scam but…there can be scam campaigns within the Indiegogo site. How do you find out which one are the scams? There are many legit campaigns that deserve getting funded and many scams that don’t deserve even the time to read about them, let alone watch a video about them. Some scam campaigns are easily detected by our bullshit meter and others that seem legit but are not in fact not legit. As some nefarious individuals copy legit campaigns and just change the name to appear legit. As mentioned above, the YouTube Channel iDubbbzTV runs through some of the dishonest ones, and you can get a sense of the tactics used to better inform yourself. Also check out Indiegogo post on How to Evaluate a Campaign, before contributing, which gives some good tips to avoid the scams.

Yes, there are scams at Indiegogo, but also there is greatness, the greatness of humans, its when we as humans look outward and want to make a bigger positive effect on the world and have legitimately found a way. This way needs money, and this is a great platform for this to take place

indiegogo logo red

Indiegogo at a Glance…

Name: Indiegogo

Website: https://www.indiegogo.com
Owners: Danae Ringelmann, Slava Rubin, Eric Schell
Price: Free to sign up and create a campaign
Overall Scam Rank: 7.8 out of 10

VERDICT: LEGIT

 

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If you have any questions or comments, I would be more than happier to answer them. Thanks.

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36 comments on “Is Indiegogo A Scam?
  1. Chris says:

    Bravo, I’ve never heard of Indiegogo. I didn’t know that there was a Kickstarter alternative, sweet!!! I really like the example campaign video about the future of our roadways using Solar energy and technology to really bring us into the 21st century. I will definitely be checking out Indiegogo.

    • Dan says:

      Hey Chris, The solar freaking roadways is a great example of the proper use of video to get your campaign funded. It’s funny and keeps you glued to the screen, all the while promoting your campaign. Glad I could help.

  2. Josh says:

    The fact that Indiegogo has been around since 2008 certainly lends some credibility to the site.

    Also, it’s been around and I never heard of it [I don’t exactly live under a rock] attests to the enormity of the World Wide Web.

    It’s a shame that a wonderful platform like this does not have checks in place to weed out the scammers but I guess you are right at the end we need to rely on our bullshit meters to avoid being scammed by Indiegogo or any other crowd funding platform.

    • Dan says:

      I also didn’t hear of Indiegogo til a couple of months ago. I found this whole concept of crowdfunding interesting and wanted to do a post on them. I couldn’t agree with you more on the wonderfulness of the platform, but it needs more filters to weed out the scams.

    • David Fichou says:

      2 out of 4 Indiegogo campaigns I contributed were SCAMs and I don’t expect to ever see the product. Avoid wasting your money.

  3. hotaran emil says:

    They 100% scammers, I pay a perk and every time I asked for it, they claim product must go on manufacture after ONE WEEK !!!
    The product is AllBe1 the link is there https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/allbe1-your-all-in-one-personal-security-guardian/x/14916591#/ – I get mails from Zvi Rozenfeld (guess the name is fake any way)
    So after 45 days, they do nothingh only they raise found from people who believe on their lies…In my opinion the people from Indiegogo are agree with the scammers because they get comission .

    • Dan says:

      It diffidently puts Indiegogo in weird positions because this is how they get paid as you say commission. Whether its a legit company or a total scam. Sorry that this turn into a lost cause for you. They sure have raised a lot of money already. My advice would to walk away, it’s really hard to know what company is legitimate. Thanks for the comment and information.

    • Anthony says:

      AllBe1 is a scam, the money was raised on June 2015 and still waiting for the delivery.
      The company does not respond emails.
      I propose to whom believed on them and went ripped off )like me) to organize ourselves to not permit that this is scam is for free for the scammers.
      Indiegogo has a responsibility on this too as they earned money with the scam.

      • Dan says:

        It seems counterproductive for a company to make financial gains from scams, but that is the system in place at Indiegogo. Thanks for sharing your experience and letting other people know about it.

  4. Howard says:

    Indiegogo is a total scam. Products are always available next month and then one more month and then another month. What a load of bullshit. Look at all the products, not one is available NOW.
    I was scammed by BIMOZ . I made contact with the campaign owner Roland Escher and asked him directly ” is the product available now?” His reply, it is available now and selling exclusively on indiegogo. So I ordered and paid, next came an email about how the production was progressing, then another about testing , another about ” supplier hold ups”. That was several months ago. It’s nothing but a scam site.

    • Dan says:

      Scams are obviously present at Indiegogo, it is ripe for people looking to take other peoples money. That being said there are also legit startup business and ideas found frequently at Indiegogo. It’s up to the people to research it and hope for the best. Thanks Howard, for sharing your experience, someone else might stay away from the BIMOZ now.

    • MelonLord says:

      I paid for bimoz as well. Still getting update messages, but more than a year later that’s still all I got for my money.

  5. Jim Cardosi says:

    Dan,

    Great read and thanks for the info. While very aware of Indiegogo, I did not realize scamming was going on. Call me naïve, I guess. I’m actually getting ready to launch a campaign for a product that exists (www.swiperstrips.com), has been thoroughly tested, is being manufactured and is shipping for both B2B and B2C usage/availability. We actually want to do a direct response commercial campaign and are not sure whether to go Indiegogo or Kickstarter but need to go live soon and use the next several months for filming, editing and media planning/purchasing for Fall airing. Any thoughts on which site may be best?

  6. Bruce says:

    I have searched FOR THE PAYPAL option in the info but no option I feel safer paying that way

    • Dan says:

      I also enjoy paying through PayPal, I just feel safer and I know if there is a dispute they usually side with the buyer. If you cannot find the PayPal option maybe it isn’t offered with that particular crowd funding. Try contacting someone to find out at Indiegogo.

  7. Kenny teu says:

    YES, Totally Scam, I had been paid for the perk Since August 2015 and get nothing until today and now the campaigner no respond anymore.

    In 2016 they still respond with delay cause by many excuses but in 2017 the campaigner was not respond or advice about the products status.

    Even Indiegogo was not responsible for any fundraising problem, do not trust this kind of website anymore, you better donate your money to other charity

    • Dan says:

      I almost feel the same way you do Kenny. It’s really hard to trust and believe anybody on this kind of site. Although I really enjoy the concept of supporting something you want to come to market, too bad it’s riddled with scams or untrustworthy businesses.

  8. Dan says:

    I’ve had a project perk wait that’s probably one for the record books. Been waiting by the mailbox for my expensive perk since 2010. PROJECT 52 on Indiegogo. No updates, no perks, no product and no explanation. Gave up trying to get a response from the project itself and contacted Indiegogo. They basically said, “not our problem”. The experience put me off the crowdfunding model for good.

    • Dan says:

      That is a long time to wait for certain. It is easy to get burned on this site and people need to be aware of this. A project can appear to be legit but it isn’t. It is hard to decide and a lot of caution should be implored. Thanks for sharing your experience Dan.

  9. BDM says:

    I used to think that Indiegogo was a good idea but most of the recent items are WAY overpriced.

    For example the Azio Retro Classic Keyboard that was in today’s email. Oh special price of $159 and projected to arrive October 2017. I thought no way so I checked. It is ALREADY for sale on Amazon for $99 with free shipping. I amcanceling my subscription. Too much of a waste of time although I have seen some interesting items. They are just too much money. They will probably be selling them on Monoprice this Christmas for $79.99 (or less)

    • Dan says:

      Wow amazing keyboard I just checked it out, but expensive. Thanks for alerting us of the problem of overcharging at Indiegogo. I also checked on the prices and your right, you can find it cheaper. Over time you’d think this problem would correct itself but well see.
      Thanks Brian.

  10. Bob says:

    I was thinking of crowdfunding on Indiegogo for my project which is a legitimate project but I’m not sure if I should, I don’t want to be tied in with scammers, does anyone think it’s safe?

    • Dan says:

      There are plenty of legitimate companies, as well as scams on Indiegogo. People just need to be aware of the fact all the companies are not on the up and up and to take measures to help avoid the obvious ones.

  11. lior says:

    can i ask the money from visa comapny?

  12. José says:

    They are absolutely scam, I bake a product that get more than half million dollars and after 2 years we don’t have nothing yet, the project is MagicStick, there are not support from indiegogo at all, they aloud anyone with nothing open a campaign there and take the money of the people with no guarantee at all, indiegogo is a nest of thieves and indiegogo only take their comisión and nothing else, I personally send email to them regarding to the campaign I bake and I never get any answer at all. Never ever I will back there anymore and never recommend it to nobody, is a totally scam.

    • Dan says:

      Sorry to hear of your negative experience.
      Before investing with a company, it’s a good idea to see if you can contact them first, through whatever method: email, phone, or social media. If you don’t get a reply, I wouldn’t even bother them. This might help people avoid wasting their time and money. Also do a quick search of the company to see if there are other complaints online.
      You’re right, there are a ton of scams, you have to do your best to research before committing your hard earned money. It can still be a risk even after the research.

  13. Payal Santana says:

    Contributed no less than 10 projects on Indiegogo, all of them are “On-Demand” or advertised through their daily e-mails — only 3 works.

    Like you said, the fact that Indiegogo somehow doesn’t hold accountable for advertising multiple scam campaigns is beyond me. And since I tried enough to tell them which campaigns are scam and they managed to do ABSOLUTELY NOTHING about the scammers, I personally considered Indiegogo is indeed A SCAMMER themselves.

    On the contrary, so far, funded 3 campaigns on Kickstarters (again, popular ones), 100% deliver. Can’t complain.

    • Dan says:

      Indiegogo is ripe with scams but as you state there are legitimate companies as well. It is very hard to differentiate between legit companies and scam companies.
      Glad to hear your positive feedback on Kickstarter. Thanks for sharing your personal experience.

  14. Jinga says:

    This is a conversation I had with these scammers, both Hidizs and Indiegogo, it’s all there in black and white how you’re going to get treated by both of these companies if you are unfortunate enough to have any dealings with them. https://imgur.com/a/ay46F Text version here… https://shrib.com/#Indiegogo

    This conversation with Indiegogo happened earlier today, no reply has been given since and the ticket remains open.

  15. Anna says:

    On January 9th 2018 I ordered ThrillSeeker Solar Backpack on Indiegogo Marketplace – credit card charged with $120, product never shipped, never delivered, no refund, no further communication from IGG customer service. IGG guaranteed shipping or money back within 3-5 days – my $$$ got stolen by Indiegogo executives.

    • Dan says:

      I have heard of this same situation many times. The best thing you could probably do is research the company before giving them money to see if other people have had problems getting their product. There are a lot of scams on any of these kind of sites and it takes work to find the legitimate ones on their. I avoid it, unless I know the company well.
      Thanks for sharing your negative experience with Indiegogo, maybe it will help someone else.

  16. Paul says:

    You are joking, and as with the rest of these scammers talking the whole thing up as if there are no issues at all. Its bloggers casting these spurious opinions about these scammers that are also part of the problem. Your argument basiclly takes the line of Indigogo policies, which are a joke as there is no recourse whatsoever. These flunkies breach their own policies and legal parameters every day and you seem to be oblivious to this and the consequences to men and women globally. Your opinion is worthless and you know bugger all. Get a grip and do proper research before you assist these scammers, who regardless of the funds raised and the inability for customers/backers to have any recourse at all, merely continue to scam with impunity

    • Dan says:

      Joking I am not. I will respectfully ask you if you are joking? As I believe you failed to read my full review of Indiegogo. Did you happen to miss the negative aspect and warnings I wrote about this company, particularly under The Bad header? As well as the link of how to evaluate a campaign?
      As this is clearly written in my review, which you missed in your initial reading, Sir.
      I appreciate your comment but disregard your negativity as it is falsely based.
      Did you experience some problems with a particular company on Idiegogo or just Indiegogo? Would love for you to share the company and warnings you might have.

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