Interview With Kickstarter’s First Half-Millionaire, Scott Wilson

scott wilson Interview With Kickstarters First Half Millionaire, Scott WilsonThe Chicago designer who requested $15,000 on Kickstarter to build watches out of iPod Nanos and ended up raising more than $500,000, Scott Wilson, has quite the resume.

His design firm, MINIMAL, has worked on the Xbox 360 and Kinect Sensor, Dell’s Venue Pro Smartphone, and a line of furniture for Coalesse, among other prominent clients.

So Wilson didn’t need to raise money on Kickstarter in order to make the LunaTik and TikTok Multi-Touch Watch Kits, slick conversion kits for watches with an iPod Nano for the face.

“There are investment backers that I could have partnered with, but you run the risk of giving up some creative control and equity when you partner,” Wilson said in an email.

“I think [Kickstarter] is an amazing platform and the most well-architected one of its kind I have seen out there.”

Wilson heard about Kickstarter in articles and from a friend and decided to try it as an experiment. He and his design team had no expectations — their goal was to raise $15,000 in 30 days. But the project immediately took off in the design community online and now has “a life of its own,” he said.

Wilson and his team have started producing and shipping the kits. The TikToK design, which allows the Nano to be removed, has a December ship date, and the LunaTik model will ship in January. Kits are being shipped in the order they were received.

Despite having raised more than $546,000, Wilson has no intentions of quitting his day job to make Nano watches full time (or quitting and making off with the money). He said the phone has been ringing more at MINIMIAL since he started using Kickstarter and he’s focused on the work he has for clients.

One problem with Kickstarter — you can specify the minimum amount of interest you need, but not the maximum — and Wilson’s project doesn’t close until December 16. Does Wilson wish he could turn off the firehose of orders?

“No way. It is such a cool discovery for us and we are really thrilled to be involved in the story as it unfolds,” he said.

“One thing people need to realize, however, is that fundraising is only one part of this. Obviously, executing on the end product is equally important and what we are focused on.”

ajeffries [at] | @adrjeffries

Article continues below
More from Politics
STAR OF DAVID OR 'PLAIN STAR'?   If you thought "CP Time" was impolitic, on July 2 Donald Trump posted a picture on Twitter of a Star of David on top of a pile of cash next to Hillary Clinton's face. You'd think after the aforementioned crime stats incident (or after engaging a user called "@WhiteGenocideTM," or blasting out a quote from Benito Mussolini, or...) Trump would have learned to wait a full 15 seconds before hitting the "Tweet" button. But not only was the gaffe itself bad, the attempts at damage control made the BP oil spill response look a virtuoso performance.  About two hours after the image went up on Trump's account, somebody took it down and replaced it with a similar picture that swapped the hexagram with a circle (bearing the same legend "Most Corrupt Candidate Ever!"!). Believe it or not, it actually got worse from there. As reports arose that the first image had originated on a white supremacist message board, Trump insisted that the shape was a "sheriff's star," or "plain star," not a Star of David. And he continued to sulk about the coverage online and in public for days afterward, even when the media was clearly ready to move on. This refusal to just let some bad press go would haunt him later on.
Donald Trump More Or Less Says He’ll Keep On Tweeting as President