Design Element
Comment on "The Impact of MacHeist"
by David — Dec 17
Firstly, for those people in "the loop" who read every Mac blog, scrutizine every new Mac app for its Cocoa frameworks, write letters to the editor about how Apples reliance on Carbon has sullied the Macosphere, I'd just point out one thing:

you do not represent the vast majority of Mac users

Unfortunately, many Mac programmers (as distinct from Mac business people) have a habit of talking to themselves, engaging in conversations/debates/arguments/flamewars which are simply not relevant to the greater Mac user base. It's a closed little world, looping back on itself, checking out its own navel.

(BTW, this is not a new development. The Mac kingdom has always had its rivalries, fiefdoms, Keepers of the Sacred UI Flame, petty informants, etc.)

I see this article as a useful step along the way to depersonalizing this debate. Frankly, millions of Mac users do not care in the slightest about the jealousies or insecurities or injustices (real or imagined) described in this latest round of arguments. These users really don't know about most of the software concerned, don't know the slightest thing about the developers, and more importantly, don't want to know and shouldn't have to know.

Secondly, MacHeist is just a well-designed marketing effort, nothing more. Is it disingenuous to describe it as a boon for that new blogger darling, the Indie? Yes, it is. But, as others have pointed out, nobody has a gun to our heads. I seriously question the usefulness of MacHeist and similar efforts the weeks afterwards when customers (such as myself) hold back from purchasing software in order to wait for the next sale, but I dont question the usefulness of the market exposure. I also happen to think the idea of giving away DRM-free versions of software is incredibily short-sighted by the developers (but inspired by those who have nothing to lose by this -- MacHeist), but again, nobody is forcing me to do this, right?

The only disadvantage to me, as a developer, is that it may create a perception that good quality Mac software can be had for next-to-nothing if the customer is willing to prowl the internets and bide their time. But what else is new? There is always some marketing effort, and really, if you are anything like me, you do not have the time to be fretting about every move your competitors make.

Would I allow a product of mine to be released for nothing? No way. Would I allow it to be sold for a week in return for $5K. Probably not, but ask me in a slow week. For $15K, for a 2 year old application which is about to be superseded by a new Leopard-only version, for which I'll also charge an update fee? Sure! Send those checks baby!

But, it would be my choice.
Back to "The Impact of MacHeist"
Design Element

Copyright © Scott Stevenson 2004-2015