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The Piracy Equation


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Anyway, I was trying to point out that communicating you care and relate to customers' fears of losing invested value is important, IMO.

You can't cut prices for that reason. Even if 1,000,000 pirates would convert to paying users all of a sudden. Instead, you would need to have those conversions per month, and end up buying Apple from all the cash.-S

The potential benefits go way beyond developers slashing prices - license holders keep the option of reselling the product, there is less competition from the pirates in terms of setting up shop, there is a better prospect that your purchase will get technical support and updates/upgrades if the developer remains in business, etc.

There is really no ethical or rational way to support or defend piracy as harmless.

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I can only speak for myself but some years ago, when prices dropped on Waves plugins I bought quite a few bundles + extras. When they were so expensive, I just couldn't justify buying them as I had others which eventually got the job done too (or even better such as UAD). And I think a lot of people did the same judging by the comments on forums and social media posts. Also, I know a few people who mostly used cracks (bedroom producers) who suddenly bought them too. I believe lower prices can help to sell more and reduce piracy a bit but have no proof, only what I observed.

Also, since the latest UAD plugins have gone up in price I really have to think hard which ones I bought last, not updates of previous plugins such as 1176, LA2A and Fairchild (which I still find a harsh update price), but new plugins. Must have been more than a year and I can't see myself buy anything soon. I'd rather invest in new speakers, outboard or a better monitoring controller...and maybe the ProX2 update (depending on its update price). :)

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Well then, Sebastian, what is your solution?

We are in the same situation in the sense that the company I am working for is about the same size as yours (a couple employees more, but same segment "Small Business"). As you, we sell software. But we don't have a piracy problem at all, because we sell business software.

The problem we share is that small companies are susceptible to risks, i.e. a key person stops being available for some reason, finance issues occur all of a sudden, a big project doesn't work as expected, etc.. The solution for that is: "Get bought by Apple or Google". Don't want that? Then: "Don't be obsessed with it, and learn to live with it.". That's all I can say.



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  • 1 year later...

Here's a bold statement you won't hear everyday.

When I was starting out creating and selling patch banks for early software synths - when soundbanks were very few and far between (only people doing Eletronica stuff was Vengeance sound back in the waldorf pulse/NI Pro-52/53 days) I 'self pirated' the soundbanks I had created which were selling on my site and posted them to sites & newsgroups - I linked back in the readmes and zips to my site and it helped me make a name for myself and sales actually increased for the soundbanks I didn't release "into the wild".

Ultimately it was probably detrimental in the long run but it helped me build an online 'profile' as a patch designer at the time - I figured that if people thought I was good enough that my stuff was being pirated then the rest falls into place.

BTW There's no message or statement in my post just thought it was a worthy contribution within a related thread.

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