Is this a scam? (Answer: No)

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#1

The lack of communication about delivery and development really concerns me.

I hope this is not a scam because I have been counting on this laser for some time.

Has there been any consumer advocates like the attorney generals of each state been engaged to investigate to protect the buyers interest? Or is this purely caveat emptor?

If it is not a scam, with such a large community I would think they would want to engage with their buyers/supporters. Many of us have significant knowledge in the embedded space that could help them. Personally I have a background in Design of embedded computing, test development, EMC, and power supply design and have working knowledge of product certifications like NEBs, product safety, UL, CE, RoHS, etc.

the only testing I could think that is really holding them up with hardware at this point is EMC or product safety. The EA and DA stages of product development should already have the major functional pieces tested. Finial regulatory certifications are sometimes near the end (due to major changes would typically cause them to be redone).

the other thing I could think of, is material. If they have not properly planned their material purchases they may not want to publish it.


Is Glowforge a con?
#2

No, not a scam, it is a start up. It is posable that the results could be the same but not likely.

So far no one has had reason to get an attorney general involved. Anyone with cold feet can get their money back.

Dan, the CEO engages here on a regular basis and has put out job announcements from time to time. I’d suggest contacting them through email if you think you have something special to contribute.


#3

Thank you for contributing! And, welcome to the forum.
As far as updates are concerned: Here is the long of it and the short of it. We hope you find these useful in answering further questions.


#4

Just to add…there’s an Announcements section of the forum here where we get the latest status updates.

Another update is due in early December. Be sure to keep an eye on the Announcements section if you want to know what’s going on. :slight_smile:


#5

I can understand your concerns when money has been committed for a product, but in most startup/kickstarter environments, you are not guaranteed your money back once the initial numbers are met.

Even though Glowforge has received investor funds (back in early summer), not even those investors are guaranteed to get their investment back. They would have 1st rights on a company that fails and has to liquidate, but secured creditors (bank loans, supply vendors, corporate service providers) are always at the front of the line legally.

It has not been an enjoyable delay, but I have watched many failures of kickstarters/startups that looked promising and the Glowforge company has always been up front with their status (and failures) which has been more transparent than most delayed projects.


#6

I was just thinking: if this were a scam (rather than a startup that we all hope and mostly believe will succeed in delivering cool product) where would have been some much easier ways of doing it. All the appearances at Maker Faires, all the beta users and visitors and continuing investors who would have to be either fooled or in on the game. The offices, the forum posts… Anyone who could organize and maintain a scam that large and complex for this long would have much bigger fish to fry.


#7

I can understand your questions. In today’s scam-filled world it’s easy to be suspicious of everything. And maybe you should be. I was suspicious of Glowforge from the start. Not even knowing what they’re selling (calling it a 3D printer rather than a laser cutter just to ride the 3D printer bandwagon was certainly a real turnoff), too much advertising and advertainment… It all really made me suspicious. So I didn’t impulsively purchase it like I wanted to (even though it was wife-approved). Instead, I researched.

I found that @dan Shapiro, CEO of Glowforge, has brought things to market in the past. That’s a big deal. I also found he’s the brother of famed NPR journalist Ari Shaprio whom I’ve listened to and enjoyed for the past couple of years. So there’s a bit of integrity-by-association there for me as I imagine if Dan was scamming everybody, it could very well tarnish his brother’s good name.

So, while I didn’t purchase in the initial Oct-2015 pre-order, still wife-approved, I subsequently ordered earlier this year. Like all of us here, I’m hoping to have my unit very soon.

Hope that helps!


#8

You just used my way of explaining why going to the moon is most likely what we did and not a hoax. If it is more complex to do the hoax/scam why not just do the thing.


#9

(Albeit I did have a friend once who looked at what his stock was suddenly worth, looked at how much work there was to do, and then did suggest to his colleagues that they all just shut things down and head for Tahiti. They were not amused.)


#10

Glowforge absolutely welcomes community support. You just have to apply for a job, they have been hiring more and more positions basically since the campaign launched.

As for communication/engagement, there has been a ton of it. But contained here in the forums so that people who don’t want to be bothered with constant communication are able to notice when a big announcement is made by email (instead of having muted it long since because 95% of all emails are fluff).


#11

As an owner of two Glowforge Pro’s, who has viewed them in action with my own eyes, I can assure you it’s not a scam. Also, Dan is one of the kindest and most genuine guys you’ll meet.


#12

Scam - in my understanding of the definition, a project that actually returns funds on request does not qualify.

The venture capitalists involved with this project initially funded it, and returned with more millions for a bigger piece of the pie.
Their research and understanding of the situation far exceed my grasp, and gives me complete faith in Glowforge.


#13

Since you’re new to the forum (and thus might have gotten most of your previous engagement with the company in other formats, such as the sparse company e-mails and Facebook posts), you might consider looking at Dan’s participation and interaction in the forum to get a sense of how “not a scammer” Dan is–just type “@dan” into the search field at the top right of this page. You can see how how often (VERY often, for a crazy-busy founder) he interacts with this group, answers questions directly, etc. My search brought up the latest 50 results, which came from the past 10 days–so, he’s interacted with the community on average, 5 times a day. That’s much more often than I usually communicate with my own boss in startup settings.


#14

Anyone who worries it is a scam should simply get a refund. No one who has asked for a refund has been denied, right?


#15

That’s right. :relaxed:


#16

Please understand that everyone is welcome to own a GF and you can spend your money as you see fit.

Being derogatory to supplier of a product and/or service neither increases their capacity nor motivates them to meet your needs or desires.

Since Glowforge has promised to refund monies before the GF ships, people who are using terms like “scam”, “vaporware”, “unlikely to happen”, “untrustworthy”, and such, really need to decide that their money is more important to them than waiting for a Glowforge.

Your dissatisfaction, with how things are now, is only going to carry over once you have your GF. At that point in time, choosing to return the GF is going to cost you shipping, restock fee (I don’t even know what that might be) and the residual resentment of not having those funds for a year or so.

Rather than allowing that to rub you raw for years to come, save yourself the misery by getting your money back; to use it for what you want and be pleased with whatever choose to do with it.

The GF owners want everyone to be satisfied with their own GF and all the future experiences they have with it.

For the record, I don’t work for Glowforge and had not heard of them before Oct 15, 2015. My choice has been to buy the Pro with filter and struggled greatly with the delays and setbacks.


#17

Spot on. There are alternatives after all and even for similar price points. But, they’ll lose access to this group and some really clever people with all sorts of neat backgrounds which comes out in their creativity.


#18

:hearts::hearts::hearts: (out of likes) - Rich


#19

patience is a virtue.


#20

@lgibson, I’m so sorry we don’t have your laser to you yet. I do understand if you’re concerned - please let us know if you’d prefer not to wait, and we’ll get a refund to you right away.

To everyone else - thank you so much for the kid words and good vibes. On nights like tonight (still at the office :slight_smile: ) it goes a long way to remember who we’re all working for.