The Scribble Pen, you might also remember, is a undertaking via bay location startup Scribble Technology that places a coloration sensor and more than one ink reservoirs in a pen. We’ve talked about it before, proper after they cancelled their Kickstarter marketing campaign after netting 366% of their authentic goal.
Yes, they cancelled their marketing campaign after being efficiently funded. To Kickstarter’s credit, the Scribble group was once requested to supply a higher video of the pen demonstrating its capabilities. The group pulled the plug on the campaign, pronouncing they’ll be returned soon.
Here is the new campaign. The attentive reader will word the new marketing campaign is now not a Kickstarter project; instead, it is a Tilt campaign. What is Tilt? It’s a platform that permits for crowdfunding, fundraising, pooling, and different ‘many wallets into one’ Internet-based projects. It’s absolutely no longer a horrific notion if you’re elevating cash for a charity or the Jamaican bobsled team. For crowdfunded product development, caveat emptor doesn’t pretty cowl it.
With greater than $200,000 in the bank, you would suppose the questions requested in many remarks on the ancient Kickstarter would be answered. They were. Scribble put up a new video displaying the pen drawing unique colorings of ink on a piece of paper. This video was once faked. [Ch00f] at Drop Kicker took aside the new video body by using body and located these – ahem – scribbles have been inserted in put up production. The video has due to the fact that been changed on the Tilt marketing campaign page, however proof of Scribble deleting feedback questioning this exists.
Any thought of the Scribble pen being actual has been put to bed. Kickstarter threatened to get rid of the marketing campaign if a higher video ought to now not be produced inside 24 hours. The Scribble crew cancelled their marketing campaign to regroup and put collectively a higher video. In two weeks, the group used to be solely in a position to produce a faked video. The Scribble pen does now not exist.
Case closed, you may think. Digging into movies body by way of body will inform you a lot, however it won’t supply you the full picture. We understand what occurred with the Scribble pen, however very little about the who, why, and how this huge, obviously apparent fraud occurred. Before we get to that, preserve on to your hats – it solely receives shadier from right here on out.
For months, the human beings in the back of Scribble have labored tough to ‘control the message,’ so to speak, no longer solely of what their pen can do, however who is on the improvement team, and how a ways alongside they are in the improvement process. From the outside, Scribble seems to be a finely tuned company organism; reliable statements are solely made thru the Scribble Facebook account, Twitter account, and as feedback on the now defunct Kickstarter. It’s an in reality beautiful show of staying on message, however some thing that does no longer lead to any factors of contact inside Scribble.
Who then is at the back of Scribble? The organisation line is in reality of a startup based totally in San Francisco that has been working for two years to deliver this product to market. There are references to an engineer and shade scientist on the Scribble team, however so far, solely three human beings have lent their names to the company.
In all the media insurance Scribble has gotten from dozens of tech blogs, we understand of solely three humans who are formally phase of the Scribble team. The founders and inventors of Scribble, [Mark Barker] and [Robert Hoffman] have been noted and quoted by way of quite a few media outlets. [Kevin Harrison], any other member of the Scribble team, has solely been noted in a piece via The Guardian that has on account that been picked up and copied by means of a variety of different tech and diagram blogs. Not one of these three human beings can be discovered on LinkedIn as being employed by means of Scribble, or even working in the San Francisco place in a tech startup. Outside of the many weblog posts on the Scribble pen, these human beings do now not exist on the Internet.
A Registered Company
Not being capable to pick out the founders and personnel of a agency is one thing, however now not being in a position to discover the corporation itself is every other count entirely. Searching via the California nation archives for agencies the usage of the phrase “scribble” in their name, solely one such enterprise hails from San Francisco. This enterprise was once registered over twelve years ago, and is for sure no longer the Scribble in question. The reality that Scribble is now not a enterprise licensed by using the nation of California is no longer proof it is no longer a enterprise in California, though; clever startups would possibly register in both Delaware or Nevada. Here again, Scribble is now not to be found. In fact, in all fifty states, there is no report of a organisation named Scribble registered in the previous two years.
There is one cause why Scribble can now not be located in any country registry of businesses: Scribble may want to be ‘Doing Business As.’ This skill the founders of the business enterprise would be held for my part in charge for any felony motion taken towards the company. If Scribble does no longer fulfill its preorders, every body who contributed to this marketing campaign should file a suit, get a judgement in opposition to the proprietors of Scribble, and get a sheriff’s deputy to smooth out their house. This would be a stunning show of lack of knowledge on behalf of the Scribble team. I actually can no longer think about each person missing in enterprise experience so tons they would open themselves up to this kind of liability.
With any kind of commercial enterprise that is growing some thing new and novel, it’s a desirable thought to have a trademark for your commercial enterprise and your product. Lucky, then, that we can search for US Trademarks. There are a few registered emblems for merchandise referred to as ‘Scribble’ – a toy scooter, eyeliner, and one for corrugated paperboard making machines.
This does now not show there is no longer a trademark utility for a Scribble pen – considering the Scribble Facebook web page used to be set up in May of this year, we’re proper on the threshold of when the trademark utility would be published. Given the lack of a registered business, and any kind point out on the Internet of the human beings working on Scribble, it’s inconceivable there are any trademark functions pending.
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