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The annual commitment "paid monthly" is NOT a month-to-month subscription

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Bob Cole
The annual commitment "paid monthly" is NOT a month-to-month subscription
on Jan 30, 2016 at 12:48:24 am

I am writing to make a suggestion to others who are considering a subscription to the Creative Cloud: be very clear about the commitment that you are making. I say this in light of my own failure to do so.

You should think about the true annual costs of the commitment you are making, not the monthly fee. If you choose the annual subscription, paid monthly, it can be very costly to switch to month-to-month. If you change your mind (after a grace period), Adobe charges half of your remaining annual charge. So you have to take an immediate hit that is, in many cases, a lot more than the monthly charge, in order to cancel your subscription.

I'm saying this somewhat ruefully, because when I signed up for the Cloud, I didn't think about the annual commitment, and I'm going to pay a price for that oversight. When Adobe went subscription, I was offered a great "deal," something like $40/month. The rate has since increased. What I didn't realize was that the same annual commitment I'd made at $40/month applied to the new rate as well. Adobe states this very clearly, but somehow I missed the message.

Changing to the month-to-month commitment is thus doubly expensive: it costs more per-month, to subscribe month-to-month, but it also costs a lot to cancel the annual subscription.

Even so, I've decided to try a month-to-month subscription, when I get a little bit closer to the expiration of my annual commitment. This is my choice, and has everything to do with my needs and annual workflow, and nothing to do with moralistic arguments about Adobe's business plan.

I'm simply trying to educate others to the fact that a commitment that looks like $70/month is actually 12 times that, or $840/year. Even if you cancel in, say, Month 7, you will pay 7x$70 plus half of the remaining 5x$70, or $665. It is very clever marketing, on Adobe's part, that they emphasize the monthly cost as opposed to the annual commitment. But there's no reason we have to see it that way.

I have used older versions of Adobe software during the last month, getting ready for my divorce from the Cloud. At the same time, I realize that the handwriting is on the wall, as OSX evolves, and video formats continue to change: at some point, CS5.5 and CS6 will no longer be functional. And, while I was trying to make do with my non-subscription copies of Adobe software, I ran into several instances where there were bugs which so delayed me that I had to use my CC 2015 software. And, once you have projects on the latest version, it is a real PITA to switch them back, version-by-version, to the CS5.5 and CS6 versions. So I will continue to seek expert opinion in this forum regarding alternatives to Adobe products.

Thanks, and good luck!

Bob C


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Oliver Peters
Re: The annual commitment "paid monthly" is NOT a month-to-month subscription
on Jan 30, 2016 at 1:16:16 am

[Bob Cole] "I'm simply trying to educate others to the fact that a commitment that looks like $70/month is actually 12 times that, or $840/year. Even if you cancel in, say, Month 7, you will pay 7x$70 plus half of the remaining 5x$70, or $665. It is very clever marketing, on Adobe's part, that they emphasize the monthly cost as opposed to the annual commitment. But there's no reason we have to see it that way."

Where does your $70/month come from? And yes, this is an ANNUAL contract. So why wouldn't you just finish out the year and then change?

- Oliver

Oliver Peters Post Production Services, LLC
Orlando, FL
http://www.oliverpeters.com


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Bob Cole
Re: The annual commitment "paid monthly" is NOT a month-to-month subscription
on Jan 30, 2016 at 2:18:21 am

Good points. I will probably get close to finishing out the year-long commitment. First, I want to find viable alternatives to the Cloud, including subscribing only to the one or two Adobe programs for which I cannot find better alternatives.

$69.99 is the Teams rate. I know the individual rate is cheaper. When CC started, the "Teams" option was a better deal, or so I was told by Adobe. When the "teaser rate" expired, Adobe automatically transferred me into the regular "Teams" category. I was so busy during the critical period that I didn't take the time, as I should have, to investigate all of the options. My bad -- but also, imho, Adobe's bad, to put its own short-term interest above mine. They could have had a customer-for-life, had they bothered to send me an email advising me that there was a less-expensive option.

Have you ever saved a customer money, even at your own expense? It's a pretty good strategy. Long-term, that is.


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Oliver Peters
Re: The annual commitment "paid monthly" is NOT a month-to-month subscription
on Jan 30, 2016 at 2:47:10 am

With all due respect, I don't think Adobe was ever secretive about the introductory rate being just that, introductory. Therefore, it would go up to the normal rate at the end of the first year. The team rate only makes sense if you are managing multiple workstations and want to do so under a single account. Each imdividual account covers two machines.

But to the other issue, how do you use the Adobe apps and what prevents you from simply shifting to alternative applications? Serif Affinity to replace Photoshop/Illustrator; Avid/FCPX/Lightworks to replace Premiere; Fusion to replace After Effects; Resolve to replace Speedgrade; Logic/ProTools to replace Audition; etc.

Oliver

Oliver Peters Post Production Services, LLC
Orlando, FL
http://www.oliverpeters.com


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Bob Cole
Re: The annual commitment "paid monthly" is NOT a month-to-month subscription
on Jan 30, 2016 at 2:57:44 am

Thanks for the "due respect," Oliver. But no need for any respect at all! I made a bad choice (or failed to make the right one). I should have taken the time to double-check the options. I only wrote because I wanted to spare someone else that mistake.

Thank you for the suggestions for alternatives. Much appreciated.

Bob C


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David Mathis
Re: The annual commitment "paid monthly" is NOT a month-to-month subscrip
on Jan 31, 2016 at 1:53:00 am

While in agreement with Oliver for the most part, one area I slightly and respectfully disagree with him. Fusion is a very robust compositing application but After Effects is better for motion graphics. Fusion better suited for single shot scenarios due to node based workflow. Ideally, layers, and this my opinion, is better suited for long form motion graphics such as a title sequence. Feel free to disagree.

Resolve is a alternative to Speed Grade and, to an extent, Premiere Pro for editing. It does require a beefy computer, however, as it is very dependent on a high octane performance machine.

My two cents and happy to discuss this further. Let me know how things go as I am looking at other options myself.

Thank you both for your contribution here.


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Oliver Peters
Re: The annual commitment "paid monthly" is NOT a month-to-month subscrip
on Jan 31, 2016 at 2:29:14 am

[David Mathis] "While in agreement with Oliver for the most part, one area I slightly and respectfully disagree with him. Fusion is a very robust compositing application but After Effects is better for motion graphics. "

It was only an option, since it starts at free. There's really no disagreement from me. There really isn't a good purchasable alternative to AE. The closest would be Boris RED or Apple Motion, but neither really comes close to what AE does for a power user.

- Oliver

Oliver Peters Post Production Services, LLC
Orlando, FL
http://www.oliverpeters.com


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David Mathis
Re: The annual commitment "paid monthly" is NOT a month-to-month subscrip
on Feb 1, 2016 at 2:26:40 am

Thanks for the post Oliver, and I completely agree. My apologies if my comments came off as offensive, never my intent.

I am not a motion graphics designer, much prefer editing. My drawing skills are lacking at best. I just need to do some title cards and very limited motion graphics work so Motion fits my needs well. I do understand how After Effects and Fusion are more appropriate tools based on the job. I am always willing to keep an open mind and look forward to your input.


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Simon Ubsdell
Re: The annual commitment "paid monthly" is NOT a month-to-month subscrip
on Jan 31, 2016 at 10:38:32 am

[David Mathis] "Fusion is a very robust compositing application but After Effects is better for motion graphics."

Although in principle this is right, I think I'd disagree that this is a hard and fast distinction. Walter S. pointed out a while ago that there is plenty of extremely complex mograph work being done with Fusion and pointed to these reels of work:





Some of it would probably be a challenge for After Effects, in fact.

So your statement is a bit like saying that "After Effects is a very robust motion graphics application but After Effects is better for compositing." This would certainly be true, in my view, but that doesn't stop many, many people using After Effects for some quite advanced compositing situations.

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo-uk.com


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Chris Pettit
Re: The annual commitment "paid monthly" is NOT a month-to-month subscription
on Feb 1, 2016 at 12:02:56 am

[Oliver Peters] "what prevents you from simply shifting to alternative applications? Serif Affinity to replace Photoshop/Illustrator; Avid/FCPX/Lightworks to replace Premiere; Fusion to replace After Effects; Resolve to replace Speedgrade; Logic/ProTools to replace Audition; etc."

Sigh.... When Fusion ACTUALLY replaces AE and when Affinity ACTUALLY has a PC option.

Somewhat selective observations I would say. As usual

I'll repeat an observation that many have directed at me and others before: The same arguments never change do they?


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Oliver Peters
Re: The annual commitment "paid monthly" is NOT a month-to-month subscription
on Feb 1, 2016 at 12:10:35 am

I'm not exactly sure what your post means, however the examples Simon posted for Fusion were quite enlightening.

Oliver

Oliver Peters Post Production Services, LLC
Orlando, FL
http://www.oliverpeters.com


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Chris Pettit
Re: The annual commitment "paid monthly" is NOT a month-to-month subscription
on Feb 1, 2016 at 12:16:11 am

[Oliver Peters] "I'm not exactly sure what your post means, however the examples Simon posted for Fusion were quite enlightening."

Encouraging. NOT enlightening.

If you think the sum total of what is required in motion graphics is answered with those 2 samples I have a bridge in Brooklyn to sell you. No disrespect to the samples, fine work.

Those of us that live inside motion graphics for a living and ALL its permutations and demands understand the power AND the limitations of each platform. This is what David is referring to.


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Oliver Peters
Re: The annual commitment "paid monthly" is NOT a month-to-month subscription
on Feb 1, 2016 at 12:33:10 am

If you go back and reread my comment to David, I actually stated that AE was hard to replace, so you'll get no argument from me about AE. However, I think you are assuming that every motion graphics user needs the same horsepower as you. Many AE users could easily get by with Motion or Fusion or RED or for that matter, simply doing it all in their NLE of choice. Ultimately it depends on how much pain you want to go through to get rid of Adobe apps from your system.

Oliver

Oliver Peters Post Production Services, LLC
Orlando, FL
http://www.oliverpeters.com


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Chris Pettit
Re: The annual commitment "paid monthly" is NOT a month-to-month subscription
on Feb 1, 2016 at 1:02:35 am

[Oliver Peters] "If you go back and reread my comment to David, I actually stated that AE was hard to replace"

Yes, after your initial observation:

"...what prevents you from "simply" shifting to alternative applications?"

"Simply" is the reason I responded

Maybe it's because I'm slamming a motion graphics deadline (once again) using subscribe-or-lose-your-work tools because there are no complete and true alternatives at the moment (without risking failure) that I find that kind of observation to be myopic.

How have you used Fusion in your workflow? I advocated for the Fusion workflow as a potential alternative after NAB last year, (and was probably prematurely enthusiastic). Maybe if you posted samples of your own work where you demonstrated how we can "simply" shift to alternate applications it would help enlighten us.


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Oliver Peters
Re: The annual commitment "paid monthly" is NOT a month-to-month subscription
on Feb 1, 2016 at 1:35:52 am

[Chris Pettit] "How have you used Fusion in your workflow? I advocated for the Fusion workflow as a potential alternative after NAB last year, (and was probably prematurely enthusiastic). Maybe if you posted samples of your own work where you demonstrated how we can "simply" shift to alternate applications it would help enlighten us.
"


Thanks for the snide and condescending attitude. I have used Fusion and Motion for mograph work but it's been a few years, however, I am not a mograph artist, nor do I claim to be. But I am trying to offer some suggestions and options in the spirit of a discussion. How about you?

Oliver

Oliver Peters Post Production Services, LLC
Orlando, FL
http://www.oliverpeters.com


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Chris Pettit
Re: The annual commitment "paid monthly" is NOT a month-to-month subscription
on Feb 1, 2016 at 2:26:16 am

[Oliver Peters] "Thanks for the snide and condescending attitude. I have used Fusion and Motion for mograph work but it's been a few years, however, I am not a mograph artist, nor do I claim to be. But I am trying to offer some suggestions and options in the spirit of a discussion. How about you?"

Exactly my point. I'm not an editor. But I'm sure you've seen my remarks regarding how I think you should use NLEs? How about my my comments telling you how you should use or invest in NLE solutions?

If I said "why cant you 'simply' choose" a better editing program, as an editor, how would you respond to my remarks? Coming from someone, like myself, who doesn't actually use the tools to make a living, what might be your response?

I use Adobe Premiere regularly, I own Apple FCP but I don't use it anymore. Does that make me an editor? Or an authority on what editors should consider to be valid software, and whether to rent it? Am I qualified to pass edicts regarding people who actually use NLE software for a living?

Sorry to be a little fed up with this type of dialogue Oliver. But it's really old. I've even moved over to the dark side and accepted renting Adobes heroin and then largely stayed silent but it's STILL not enough. There are those who want to continue the condescension and perpetuate the illusion that we all have choices when we may not have.

I continue to be appalled at the nature of the Adobe subscription discussion, even after years. Any criticism of Adobe is met with the same hackneyed "why cant you simply go on to other applications" lecture.

We've all heard it before.


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Oliver Peters
Re: The annual commitment "paid monthly" is NOT a month-to-month subscription
on Feb 1, 2016 at 2:44:37 am

But you are making the assumption that AE is being used for motion graphics because you are a motion graphics artist. A lot of people use AE for entirely other reasons. Like color correction, stabilization, visual effects. If you follow any of the ProLost writings, you know that Stu is a heavy AE user and it has nearly nothing to do with motion graphics. If that's the case, then other options are indeed valid.

Not a non-subscription option, but how would you characterize Flame or Smoke?

Oliver

Oliver Peters Post Production Services, LLC
Orlando, FL
http://www.oliverpeters.com


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Chris Pettit
Re: The annual commitment "paid monthly" is NOT a month-to-month subscription
on Feb 1, 2016 at 3:00:22 am

[Oliver Peters] "Not a non-subscription option, but how would you characterize Flame or Smoke?"

Don't use them. But compositing tools. BTW, thats why I wouldn't give advice to people that do you them


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Jason Watson
Re: The annual commitment "paid monthly" is NOT a month-to-month subscription
on Feb 1, 2016 at 1:15:03 pm

[Bob Cole] "My bad -- but also, imho, Adobe's bad, to put its own short-term interest above mine. They could have had a customer-for-life, had they bothered to send me an email advising me that there was a less-expensive option.

Have you ever saved a customer money, even at your own expense? It's a pretty good strategy. Long-term, that is."


I'll definitely agree with this last part. If it were me (and you may have already tried this, so feel free to ignore if so), I'd probably call up customer service and politely bother them enough until they transferred me to someone high enough who could either waive the cancellation fee, meet in the middle or move me over to the less expensive option.

Or you might try appealing directly to some of the product managers who frequent this and other forums. They likely won't be able to do anything about it in and of themselves, but they might be able to get your case in front of someone who can. Even in a behemoth like Adobe I'd imagine there are managers who have the power and the brains to do whatever they can within reason to keep you in the fold, so to speak, or at least show a departing customer grace in hopes of getting you back in the future.

No idea if any of this would work, but it might be worth a shot.


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