Endless discussion on licensing and pricing

RM richmondmathewson at gmail.com
Mon May 2 09:50:46 EDT 2016

On 2.05.2016 15:56, Paul Dupuis wrote:
> This really is a pointless discussion and I know people will find that
> comment offensive and it is not intended to be.

No, I cannot see how that is offensive.

BUT, water does wear away stones, and while water does not
wear away stones overnight, it does have a significant environmental 
impact over time.

> For ANY product - even Free ones - there are people who will feel that
> the "value" for the "cost" (whether that cost is money, time, whatever)
> is not what it "should be". The higher the cost, the more people will
> fall into this group.
> For every organization delivering a product, that organization has to
> make the product's cost vs value work for THEM. If they charge too
> little, they go out of business. If they charge too much, no one buys
> it. If they favor one market segment with huge discounts while others
> pay a fortune, they piss off the segment paying the fortune or do not
> make enough revenue due to the huge discounts

Well, this is, very much, Livecode's dilemma; and, just possibly, one of 
the ways to
sort things out is to listen to what their customers / potential 
customers / past customers
have to say; and as Livecode have not sent out any significant "feelers" 
to find out what
these people think, and because a lot of these people have a significant 
stake in Livecode,
and Livecode depends on them, might it not be a good idea if those 
people keep
"shouting" until Livecode do take heed?

> Organizations making products, unless they are complete idiots (and
> hence would be out of business quickly), look at all their feedback. If
> the are not pricing something a certain way, it because that way doesn't
> work for them. Potential customer can (1) not buy anything; (2) find the
> money to buy it, possibly waiting for a "sale"; or (3) waste time and
> effort uselessly rehashing discussions that have long since taken place
> (new people to lists are excused since they may never have seen prior
> discussions).

I run a school which, by nature of it not being state funded, is also a 
business, and
there is a constant "dance" between the need to provide education and to 
make sufficient funds
to finance the thing; and, almost inevitably, those things often 
conflict - I listen to my
client base (parents, pupils, and so on) and get someone to keep ringing 
up my rivals
and tell them lies about their having a son who needs "extra tew" in 
English and how does
their pricing work. If I didn't do these things I would be, to use one 
of my son's favourite
phrases "well f*cked".

There is also a "price point" which is notoriously difficult to 
establish, and is normally worked out
by balancing what "extra" I might have over my rives, how much parents 
are prepared to pay,
and what my rivals charge.

> We make a niche product for researchers, primary academic researchers.
> We have separate pricing tiers for commercial users (retail price),
> government users (a discount), educational institutions (a bigger
> discount) and a special price for students (80% discount). I know we
> loose sales because some students think our student price is still too
> high and we loose some sales because our commercial users think they pay
> too much compared to others. We price our products after careful review
> of our markets, our competition's pricing, and what we need to do to not
> loose money, but make a dollar or two. We have never lost a sale to
> anyone who needed a better price who contacted us in private email to
> ask for a better price, but we've never responded to public comments for
> revisions to our pricing because pricing is complex and should never be
> driven by arguments on a email list or forum.
> Again, I don't mean to be offensive, but it just seems like people's
> time would be better spend either contacting LiveCode private to try to
> negotiate a price point for some need of theirs or spend the time coding
> or learning a new xTalk feature or anything but arguing about pricing
> and licensing yet again.

There is a general pattern with contacting companies privately: no 
witnesses, no comeback.
Now I wouldn't like to characterise Livecode in that way, but they may 
not, frankly, have the time to
cope with a slew of individual attempts at negotiation.

If this "conversation" is kept going, and Livecode takes tent of it, it 
might just
help them to help us to find a modus operandum that both satisfies more 
Livecode programmers
and brings them greater revenue.

And, as Paul Brett's very well stated post makes clear, that is the 
lever on which everything hinges.


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