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Old 11-01-2009, 12:35 PM   #1
Lukario
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vBulletin Shafts Customers...Yet Again

Thought this would be of interest to some of you, mostly to Mario, but everyone should be aware.

tl;dr stuff
Spoiler
It looks as though the release of vB4 is pretty much imminent in the next few months, and with that, comes a major overhaul of the code. The layouts are going to be different, the current skins will become incompatible, and pretty much all of the mods will become useless once vB4 is released. Some of you are wondering, well, why not just pay for the version we have now, and that is where the title of the thread comes into play.

While this issue is definitely not something new, it's it new in the sense that more and more people are complaining about how the company is ran (that is, Internet Brands, which owns vBulletin.) Many people are talking about how they were denied access to modifications and even had their licenses revoked, which means that whichever users were affected by this would pretty much lose their forum when their license expired if they didn't switch over to another software.

The main reason for people's complaints was that the pricing plan would change. Starting with vB4, new customers would now have to pay $250 the software, a $110 increase from what it used to be. In addition, licensees would now not pay yearly fees to renew their licenses, but instead, for every major new release. (This plan is similar to how Apple handles the iPod/iPhone. Under the pricing amendment, you would have to pay for each new iPod/iPhone released. Under the old terms, you would pay $40 a year to receive updates. This means if you owned the iPhone 3G, and Apple all of a sudden came out with the iPhone 3G s, you could upgrade to the iPhone 3G s free of charge, as long as you held a current license.) Many people are complaining about how vBulletin had literally blindsided its customers with this pricing amendment. People were given almost an ultimatum: upgrade to vB4 now or lose your forum. Even worse, the pre-sale only lasted a couple of weeks, and ended yesterday. Either way, it was a lose-lose situation.


Now, for how that affects this forum. Unless Mario has been active on the vB forums at all in the past month, there would be no way for him to know about this except for the little notices posted in the Admin CP. Another big concern is that there is no longer an option, at this point, to renew a license for vB3, you must buy vB4. Also, it looks like this scenario will now impact every major release, meaning that when vB5 rolls around, you'll have to buy it in order to keep using the product. That's like Ford telling its customers if they don't buy the newest F-150 they can no longer drive their car at all. Would you buy from Ford if that happened?

More tl;dr stuff
Spoiler
My opinion? Very deceitful business marketing. If I was Mario, I'd be looking for alternatives, because vBulletin has lost all my respect at this point. If they want to treat customers with disrespect by banning them from the support forums for "Violating the terms of Use" and then reps try to cover it up by saying that they warned users many times and that bannings were used as a lost resort. Many users stated to the contrary, most saying they received absolutely no warning whatsoever. It just looks like these guys are fresh out of business school and have absolutely no idea how to run a company. Now, obviously not all of them are, but the ones that decided vB's fate surely are dumb. They treat customers as nothing but a commodity, and that's it. If you do not want to buy, then good day, and *ban*. This is just so wrong on so many levels.


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Old 11-01-2009, 08:23 PM   #2
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Sounds pretty lame, if you ask me. We need a reliable open-source alternative.
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Old 11-01-2009, 10:32 PM   #3
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Old 11-02-2009, 12:39 AM   #4
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I think I may have made this seem a little too apocalyptic, due to a misunderstanding on my part. It seems as though the only reason to pay to upgrade would be for customers with inactive licenses. This was a fact I totally didn't take into account. So this means the upgrade will be free on this forum, but as usual, all the extras are going to cost money. As of right now, I still wouldn't recommend an upgrade, for more than obvious reasons. Besides bricking 99% of the mods here, it's probably still going to be rather unstable when it is first released. Either way, I'm still bummed that the price went up so much. Well, at least for new customers.

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Old 11-02-2009, 08:19 AM   #5
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Thanks Luk. Yes I am pissed off at Vbulletin. They did royally shaft vbulletin owners. This will get many current vbulletin sites to switch to others. They were already expensive to begin with and now it will be even more pricier.
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Old 11-04-2009, 05:38 AM   #6
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Cool

This is worrisome.....

Expenses here, Expenses there, Expenses everywhere.

There is no litigation for this stuff. VBullsh!t is doing this because of lack of reliable competition in terms of software. Its all monopolized.

Why is it nowadays money is being milked in ever phase of life.

Mario,
where will you find the funding to upgrade in all-likely hood
every fiscal year?


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