Kickstarter and the Lost Lockpick

In my new piece at Slate, meet the competitive lockpicker behind one of Kickstarter’s most troubled projects:

"They worked beautifully," Towne recalls today. "I had people walking up to me holding a pick in their hand saying, ‘I haven’t been able to really understand what happened in a lock until I used this pick. And then, after about half an hour of this, people started walking up and saying, ‘Ah, this one snapped.’"

The first few snapped picks didn’t bother Towne. They were delicate. It happens. "But then," he says, "pick after pick after pick after pick kept coming back snapping."

And then everything snapped.

And the rest…

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