​Indiegogo tests insurance to protect backers against its own policies

Protection against dubious crowdfunding projects is just $15 away
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Crowdfunding site Indiegogo is trialling an insurance perk for backers worried about not receiving goods from prospective crowdfunders.

The company is currently testing an optional additional extra on the Olive project, a wearable stress management band that we wrote about back in September.

Essential reading: The best wearable tech Kickstarter projects

The insurance is listed among the perks where you choose your pledge level, and is currently set to $15 USD for the duration of the project. The insurance gives the user the chance to get their money back, if they don’t receive their goods within three months of the pledge date.

Levying an insurance is certainly a move to counter claims that Indiegogo is the less credible of the crowdfunding services. It’s had some negative press in 2014, as its less stringent rules have enabled some spurious projects to get crowdfunding cash – and of course, Indiegogo’s USP is that projects get the cash whether they’re successful or not.

TechCrunch spoke to Indiegogo, who released this curt statement:

“Indiegogo regularly develops and tests new features to meet the needs of both funders and campaign owners. This pilot test is currently limited to this individual campaign."

At Wareable we launched our own investigation into the perils and pitfalls of crowdfunding.

Insurance like this can add peace of mind to projects, however, we have one issue with the policy.

Indiegogo’s “flexible funding policy” enables unsuccessful projects to take the money raised from backers, as long as they pay an inflated 9% cut of the cash to Indiegogo themselves (the standard fee is 4%).

Now Indiegogo is creating another charge for backers to safeguard their cash, which its rules are endangering in the first place.

That doesn’t seem right...we'll be keeping a close eye on this one.


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James Stables


James is the co-founder of Wareable, and he has been a technology journalist for 15 years.

He started his career at Future Publishing, James became the features editor of T3 Magazine and T3.com and was a regular contributor to TechRadar – before leaving Future Publishing to found Wareable in 2014.

James has been at the helm of Wareable since 2014 and has become one of the leading experts in wearable technologies globally. He has reviewed, tested, and covered pretty much every wearable on the market, and is passionate about the evolving industry, and wearables helping people achieve healthier and happier lives.

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