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Larry Jordan.....the darker side of subscriptions

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Gabe Strong
Larry Jordan.....the darker side of subscriptions
on Apr 11, 2016 at 10:19:18 am

Larry Jordan, who offers subscription based training for both FCP X and Adobe CC products, had
an interesting blog post. Interesting, to me at least, in that he touched on a point that someone
brought up in this forum in the past. The point is, that many times, subscriptions are made to 'shift the
balance of power'. What I mean by this, is that they make it very easy for you to subscribe, and
much harder to cancel your subscription. Anyone who ever tried to cancel an AOL subscription
knows what I am talking about. You enter your card number, and money comes out of your account.
But when you try to cancel, it's hard to get hold of the right person, you only have a limited window to
cancel, phone lines are always busy, and they basically make it pretty inconvenient for you in that you
end up having to take a bunch of time to get through the cancellation process.

Gabe Strong
G-Force Productions

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Gary Huff
Re: Larry Jordan.....the darker side of subscriptions
on Apr 11, 2016 at 2:05:51 pm

"RISK 1 - Cancelling a subscription does not damage any of your data. However, if you don’t have a subscription, you can’t access it because the applications themselves won’t launch."

That is such a huge "duh!" that it's embarrassing that he leads with this. Seriously, if you're the kind of idiot that cancels a subscription and then wonders why you can't get into your Creative Cloud, or Netflix, or Prime account...ugh, don't get me started.

It would be nice if Adobe offered a “Reader” application that allows us to look at the contents of a Photoshop, Premiere, After Effects, or Audition file without allowing us to make changes to it. At least then, we could review past projects to see what we did.

This I agree with. Would be nice, depends on the demand. Not sure how heavy of a programming task it would be for Adobe to implement something like this, and that could be the decision based on demand. Also, it's only $20 to open this app for a month, and as someone who has to charge for Dropbox space to clients who want to use it (at $10), I don't see it as much of a leap.

When you cancel an annual subscription, you pay 50% of the remaining portion of that subscription, with the price calculated at the higher monthly, not annual, level.

See, this is something I knew about back before I even first subscribed to Creative Cloud (back when it was just the first CC versions available) and that he would seemingly be ignorant of this "gotcha" kinda blows my mind. I understand the need, as you'd have been constantly subscribing and unsubscribing and this also ensures a predictable income stream for reporting purposes. No different than any of you currently on AT&T DSL or Gigapower, or who have been with AT&T and Verizon for a long while. It's so ubiquitous that you should check on cancellation fees right up front.

It would be nice if Adobe provided some sort of reduction of the cancellation fee based on how long we’ve been a member. Financial constraints are not always foreseeable.

It would, but maybe if everyone else started doing that too.

The kicker is that it is not possible to flag an annual subscription so that it doesn’t renew.

Yes, they should fix that. While checking to make sure it's not possible to do that, I found out that Adobe would give me 2 free months if I didn't cancel my plan (which I didn't intend to anyway), but I took the option, so I owe Jordan a beer it looks like ;-)

Dropbox makes this easy, and Adobe should tweak it to be more like that. You can cancel immediately and pay the fee, or just cancel and it will not automatically renew when the subscription period is over. Nice and elegant.

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David Mathis
Re: Larry Jordan.....the darker side of subscriptions
on Apr 12, 2016 at 9:50:39 pm

Just read the article and to me most of what he said is self explanatory. It pays well to read the fine print before beginning any subscription.

While not in agreement with subscription only as the only "choice" (using the word lightly) here there are those that will benefit from it. As long as business is good, the prducts offered are meeting your needs and you enjoy the work, nothing wrong with subscribing. As pointed out, and what should be obvious but not not the situation with others is you do not lose access to your project files you just cannot open the software.

One other thing that puzzles me is permanent incense as opposed to rental. Subscribing to a magazine is far different then software subscription. At the end of your subscription you get to keep the magazine, not so with software. Something else, you are granted a license and with that license comes with responsibility. It is a privilge rather than a right. Just as with a drivers license you have to follow rules. For example you can't drive over the speed limit, ignore stop signs or think a red light means everyone else has to wait except you. You really don't own or rent the software so tnat means you can't do certain things with it. Not sure if this is a great analogy but feel worth pointing out.

In some ways renting is actually lower cost as long as business is good and you make money. Sticking with one version for now one can be risky. At some point the software will no longer be supported and something better will be there. Because a constant update cycle requires more team work and technical support means greater cost for the software developer. Not upgrading every year can be a financial burden on the developet so they have to have some method of supporting customers and staying in business, so rent option is a must.

I am not for or against a rental option but would like somewhat of a better exit strategy. Use what works for you and respect others. The flame throwing war game gets rather old.

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