Mass­drop

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What is it?

Mass­drop (www.mass­drop.com) is a web­site which har­nesses peo­ple power to work out deals. Po­ten­tial buy­ers reg­is­ter their in­ter­est in a prod­uct and, if a cer­tain thresh­old is reached, man­u­fac­tur­ers agree to pro­duce that prod­uct for a re­duced price – a ‘drop’ – or, per­haps, to pro­duce the prod­uct in the first place.

So it’s like Kick­starter?

Not re­ally. Kick­starter, Indiegogo and the like are usu­ally fo­cused on fund­ing prod­ucts which are in the de­vel­op­ment stage. Mass­drop, on the other hand, is de­signed for stuff that’s com­pletely ready to go – its prod­ucts typ­i­cally just need fund­ing and in­ter­est to jus­tify a smallscale man­u­fac­tur­ing run.

What kinds of things, then?

As you might ex­pect, Mass­drop ex­cels at niche items. It di­vides its drops into a num­ber of dif­fer­ent com­mu­ni­ties, in­clud­ing cat­e­gories such as au­dio­phile tech, watches, me­chan­i­cal key­boards and DIY, but a re­cent ex­pan­sion has seen it hit­ting other hobby mar­kets in­clud­ing knit­ting, stitch­ing and beauty.

What’s the catch?

The Mass­drop site is a lit­tle hard to fathom at first glance, and you’ll need to be quick to get on board with drops as they usu­ally run for a lim­ited time. Shop around, too; cer­tain things pushed as bar­gains may al­ready be avail­able else­where for a good price, and while a suc­cess­ful drop means you’ll get your items, there’s of­ten a long wait at­tached for more ob­scure prod­ucts.

How do I get in­volved?

Sign up at www.mass­drop.com to set up your own ac­count and give Mass­drop your taste pro­file. The next time you visit the site, you’ll see com­mu­nity dis­cus­sion and drops that will be of po­ten­tial in­ter­est to you. Keep tabs on your credit card spend­ing, though; be­ing on the cut­ting edge can be a very tempt­ing thing…

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