USD! USD! A Kickstarter Request

For those living outside the US and running a Kickstarter campaign, goals and pledges are listed in the local currency rather than USD. This is inconvenient for many creators and backers. Perhaps we can get Kickstarter to change this.

We plan on running a Kickstarter campaign this Spring for Karmaka, a tabletop game in development. We also live in Canada. That means our pledge prices will all be listed in CAD (Canadian Dollars) rather than USD. Creators in the UK, Australia, and New Zealand are similarly bound to their country’s currencies.

Let’s face it: the majority of backers for tabletop games, video games*, and most other categories live in the USA. I also believe Americans experience a psychological barrier to backing a project in a foreign currency. (Jamey Stegmaier discusses this in his post on running a non-US-based Kickstarter campaign.) How big a factor is this? It’s hard to tell. But I believe it’s significant.

But why be bound? Perhaps Kickstarter could add the option to list your project in whatever currency you choose. I don’t mind receiving the funds at the end of the campaign in USD or my local currency – whatever works for Kickstarter; but since they’re doing currency conversions under the hood anyways, why not give us the option? In this age of digital distribution and projects with physical goods that ship directly from a manufacturer, does the currency of the creator’s country of origin really matter?

I wrote to Kickstarter support a few months ago, requesting the feature. I got a nice response.

“While this isn’t an available feature at the moment, we are always looking for ways to improve the backer experience. Your suggestions and feedback are really helpful as we move forward and make enhancements. I’ll pass along your suggestions to the team!”

Cool, but no news since then, so I tried writing again more recently and got this response.

It is still not possible to choose in which currency your project’s funding goal will be displayed. Although there is no set timeline for this feature, keep an eye on our blog for any future changes.

Encouraging, but no commitment or timeline.

I got to wondering, how many non-US creators would like to see Kickstarter add this feature? Perhaps we can work together and request Kickstarter to make this change. If we all wrote to Kickstarter support, I’m pretty sure they’d take the request more seriously. (I know that when we hear a common request from our players, it moves up our priority list and is a lot more likely to get implemented soon.)

So, if you’d like to see Kickstarter implement this, mail them at [email protected], asking them to do so. Feel free to independently describe the feature you’d like to see, or link back to this post – whatever you prefer.

Thanks! And please comment below if you do write to Kickstarter. It’d be great to know how many people have made the request!

*I couldn’t find a concrete statistic to back this up, but I’d be shocked if it wasn’t true.

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