I would like to tell you a story. A story about a watch, that was too good to be true.
Once upon a time, there was a kickstarter project, that was different than the others.
A watch, made in europe, TOP GRADE ETA 2893-2 movement, delivered in handcrafted boxes, handcrafted leather straps, an oyester bracelet and so much more.
Well. Not really.
While everyone is used to delays on kickstarter projects, occasional hiccups, and even total disasters, we were all excited, that MV guys are back in the game, with their fourth watch.
Oh my, oh my, they are launching tonight, in two hours, in 30 minutes, oh man, oh man they are launching in SECONDS NOW, everyone shut the hell up, I WANT THEM FIRST!
Nah. Typo. I am fucked. I am totally and absolutelly fucked, not going to be first. Fricking keyboard.
Backer number 24. Seriously? You sneaky bastards, I was supposed to be first!
We were all so excited, we let our guards down.
Its been two months now, since the estimated delivery date, and as usual, the closer it got, the less we knew, and then strange things began to happen. Its always odd, when you are looking at a site stating that there will be an update on 23th February.. and then, in a minute, it says 26th. Hm. Its probably not in any way related to Jameses question about the promised update for today. Oh well, no biggie, they just lied a little.
Yeah, update. well. its 28th, but who cares. They'll have first watches in mid March, great. Oyesters will be done soon, won't delay final delivery!
Kind of strange that so many comments were deleted, namely those that asked about the strange date change, and vere not happy about MV pretending this did not happen. But hey, we're getting our top grade eta 2893-2 GMT watches in couple of weeks, boys always deliver, lets all calm down.
Well. Not really.
Fast forward a month, and here we are. There is no ETA, because guys ordered cheap ones, and they turned to be the piece of crap they paid for.
No. We are not waiting anymore for them to acquire a better batch, we are getting sellitas, finito.
And the oyster? Not happening either.
There are people that pledged for this watch based on a promise of the Top grade ETA GMT movement, a thing that will be scarce to find in microbrands in the years to come. We started to ask for refunds, as a Top grade ETA movement watch with a Sellita, well, is not the same thing, and some of us are not interested in it anymore.
Before you start - I don't have any issues with Sellita or their movement. I am not trying to imply they are of lesser quality, than ETA. I am simply saying that I wouldn't have pledged for a Sellita GMT, because there will be loads of them around for time to come.
What seemed like a simple and logical solution - refunding the few that were not happy with the swap and selling the watches for full price to someone else - turned out to be something impossible. MV chose to ignore all the requests, and started to repeat that kickstarter and international rules do not allow them to refund pledges, and the Sellita movement is of the same quality.
While the latter is arguable, the fact, that they based their entire campaign on the ETA movement, which they changed without even asking the backers on last minute, is clear. Changing the heart of the watch is not a minor change. It is the frickin heart!
Lets take aside all the justice warriors defending MV, because they are getting the pepsi wath they like on the pictures, lets ignore, for a minute the tone of the MV communication, the requests they ignore, and all the messages they deleted - as author of many of them, I can tell you they were not in rude or any other unacceptable manner.
This is what they are trying to feed us with :
- Eta movements were probably old, and that is the reason they were averaging at +37 secs a day
- oysters were of low quality, so we are not supplying them
These claims are a bit hard to believe, as you don't run business just through email, but that is not all.
The response to a picture of their advertisement from 5th August 2018 stating "Only the best for Nereide GMT, A top grade ETA 2893-2 movement" by Alberto Morelli is : "These pictures were posted BEFORE THE CAMPAIGN. During the campaign the movement has always been advertised as Elabore".
The project raised 100 000$ in couple of minutes, 315 000E in five hours. One would say it was because of the marketing. Marketing that pivoted around the 2893-2 Top grade movement.
But perhaps thats just me wrongly interpreting the google cache of their page they so conveniently removed.
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