Remember that Kickstarter project in which a Redditor from Milford, Connecticut named Ken Hoinsky who claims to be “good at teaching others to be good with women” used the site to raise money to self-publish a book that encourages behavior bordering on sexual assault (“Don’t ask for permission, GRAB HER HAND, and put it right on your dick.”) in order to get girls into bed? Well, yeah, after some public outcry calling for the project to be blocked, the people at Kickstarter want you to know that they’re sorry about that.
Yes, in a blog post titled “We Were Wrong,” they write…
Why didn’t we cancel the project when this material was brought to our attention? Two things influenced our decision:
The decision had to be made immediately. We had only two hours from when we found out about the material to when the project was ending. We’ve never acted to remove a project that quickly.
Our processes, and everyday thinking, bias heavily toward creators. This is deeply ingrained. We feel a duty to our community — and our creators especially — to approach these investigations methodically as there is no margin for error in canceling a project. This thinking made us miss the forest for the trees.
These factors don’t excuse our decision but we hope they add clarity to how we arrived at it.
With that said, because the funding project ran its course successfully, Kickstarter says Hoinsky will get the money that was raised. Here’s how they plan to atone for that…
First, there is no taking back money from the project or canceling funding after the fact. When the project was funded the backers’ money went directly from them to the creator. We missed the window.
Second, the project page has been removed from Kickstarter. The project has no place on our site. For transparency’s sake, a record of the page is cached here.
Third, we are prohibiting “seduction guides,” or anything similar, effective immediately. This material encourages misogynistic behavior and is inconsistent with our mission of funding creative works. These things do not belong on Kickstarter.
Fourth, today Kickstarter will donate $25,000 to an anti-sexual violence organization called RAINN. It’s an excellent organization that combats exactly the sort of problems our inaction may have encouraged.
Ladies of Milford, Connecticut beware: Ken Hoinsky has money in his pocket and probably feels emboldened. Don’t go out this weekend without your pepper spray.
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