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Old 18th May 2009
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what about make programmes dependant on downloading components (this only goes for actual daw programmes not plugins i concede)

the core programme is crackable (as it always is lets face it), so crack users either blunder on with most of the cool features missing or pony-up and get download updates to complete the programme features.

i dunno how else you can solve it otherwise, but think of it like printer manufacturers etc - the money is in the regularly purchased accessories (carts), not the actual core-product printer

i also think companies should look at monthly 'payment clubs' for users to bring illegal users into the fold which could tie in easily with the download programme components theme - it's probably about offering cool monthly things which makes it worthwhile joining - you pay a montly small fee which pays for the s/w over a year or so and you get cool free sample packs or whatever each month as well as access to download the full set of components to make the s/w 'full' - this would be not dis-similar to updating a free cut-down s/w version given away with a soundcard

so, subscription sales with bonus's basicaly.

I dont use cubase for example - it would be useful from time to time to have it, but my monthly expenditure specifies always more important purchases. However, if i could join a 'steinberg cubase club' for a monthly pitance via direct debit or other bank debit which i'd not notice, sure i'd join and always have up to date programme and extras if i chose to grab them.

after all lets face it, with companies like steinberg they are selling dongles and thats all right now.

also such a monthly-membership system could capture people early who may become loyal users for the long haul.

every other retailer of goods from kitchens to sofas to tv's etc employ such payment/club methods (or zero % finance) or stores employ store credit cards etc, so why not s/w makers?

to sell in todays climate you need such payment plans imo. everyone does it, thats the key. people want stuff now/today and we have to concede that people 'saving' for things is almost dead as a concept nowadays.

pro users get business loans so they have a route to finance (my company bought 8 grand's worth of music-tech gear for example a few months ago thru the ease of business banking & cashflow) but the problem is people outside of such systems.

i dunno, just thinking on my feet... there are so many porogrammes i'm sure users turn to now and again, but not enuff to encourage them to pay outright in a single lump sum

also is there any way a system could be used where plugins search for a licence key in the host DAW or they wont activate in the host? and that licence key part of the host sequencer is ONLY possible via a connected download which can be cross checked, NOT as a standalone install?

having said that NI's web activation is a nightmare if you find u have to re-install s/w after a h/d crash or whatever - so it doesnt want to be a really difficult update/activate system or that'll simply encourage users to go for the fake version.

and on the same tip, Sony Vegas is so easy to crack the legal demo download & it's probably widely used because of that - in that instance the casual user probaly uses just the absolute basics of the programme, so the download components' solution might work, in that users who try it and want to get more power join-up and download and see a small debit on their bank account monthly until it is paid off - in return they get all the extra components and a licence.


also i beleive it's time the s/w industry started valueing independant local pc makers/repairers who cannot get any decent discounts to legaly retail s/w to end users when they build and maintain custom machines - typicaly an indie would find purchasing such s/w to sell on to the user would cost them more per unit at TRADE PRICE than the user could buy it for at a big web store RETAIL price - which ='s no incentive

so the typical custom builder supplies bespoke DAW machines but cant offer any good price on adding legal s/w - so the end user tends to either buy it elsewhere online or go illegal (or the builder supplies the s/w at a loss).

if builders could be used as a network to supply point of build OEM music s/w installs this could help (and establish a bona-fide network of local maintainance technicians)

perhaps it's time the music s/w industry established a database of reliable local builder/techs anyways? - the reason i say that is i believe such local pc builders account for the source of a good 50% of all DAW's in use
viously mentioed 'monthly payment club' existed, such local builders could sign people up to it for a commision etc. anything to encourage a network of legal users and support for said users.

the troube is now, local stores have evaporated and most people buy online distant from the retailer often by an actual country border. if legal s/w was tied in with some local support network this could be advantageous?


lastly why cant websites which service s/w q&a's sell club-membership and actualy get something back for all the work they do supporting manufacturers products (for no pay or even recognition alot of the time.)

like if someone spends alot of time building and supporting a website which is a basic support site for the s/w title, why cant they participate in some web setup where they can get a commission for getting users signed up for a monthly 'ownership' scheme?


sorry for rambling - just ideas based on observing this debacle for over 15 years non stop - anyways, some sort of s/w manufacturers network is required i think, whatever form it takes. s/w nowadays doesnt need 'hard-copy' boxes and manuals etc and thus distribution costs are miniscule and a s/w users monthly payment club/system could work very well & be cost effective if all manufacturers/authors participated.