January 9th, 2011

I don’t know Sophia Teutschler. I’ve never used one of her apps. In fact, the only time (prior to now) I’d ever heard of her was when I read her profile on The Setup. But I recently read about what she did to her customers, read every single comment on her two blog posts about it, and what follows is what I think of it.

A translation from Sophia-speak to you-and-me-speak:

There’s a lot of rage and profanity making its rounds in the comments, hopefully this will restore some sanity.

You people are fucking pissed.

First of all I’m sorry for the confusion about the upgrade policy and version number. The License dialog clearly states 3.0, whereas the new version is labeled as 2.5.

The problem is you, not me, and for that I am sorry.

However, this is the first paid upgrade ever in the four years that CoverSutra exists. My intent is not to make some quick dollars, it’s to sustain the development costs of an app I love and use daily.

Though you paid for this app already, over the past four years I’ve managed to run out of money.

Sophiestication Software now has five different products on sale, three new apps are currently in work. It’s obvious that I can‘t handle the workload on my own. In fact I’ve been looking for developers for months now and luckily found suitable people to help me with Groceries, Articles and some future apps. I hope to find yet another developer to work on all these cool new features and UI/UX concepts I have in mind for CoverSutra. The App Store sales in the coming weeks and months will tell.

I’d like to pay people to write more software, other than the application you’d already purchased.

The Mac App Store is actually the best that could have happened to CoverSutra. Selling an app like CoverSutra outside the store is very hard due to the lack of overall traffic. That’s why Mac application prices where usually much higher compared to iPad and iPhone apps. This might work great for some developers, but for an iTunes extension even $10 is considered by most people way too much to ask for by most people.

I will completely ignore the fact that all of you already bought this product and discuss how hard it is to sell it without an App Store.

It’s true that I could have made version 2.5 available through the legacy Sparkle updater. But maintaining two builds, one for the App Store and one with the serial number checks, was too time consuming for me. Precious time better spend on the actual update and my other apps.

Even though I have the code to support both the App Store AND the legacy distribution channel, it would require at least some work to support both.

Charging $5 for this update is fair. I don’t think, nor did I ever think of, that this is a rip-off. You also have to admit that I’m definitely not so stupid to break promises by intent. If I thought of that license text I would have simply declared this new version 3.0. Calling me a liar is simply wrong and way over the top.

Charging you $5 more for an app that you already paid for is fair. If I had it over again I would have just made the version of this app 3.0. Hell, now that I think about it, I could have called version 2.0 version 3.0 and charged you for it. You basically owe me for not doing that.

Which brings me to trust and reputation. So many people told me through the comments and twitter that they lost their respect for me. But seriously, what kind of reputation did I have if it’s lost so easily? Didn’t I prove often enough that I’m fair and not interested in any fishy marketing tactics?

I’m going to manipulate this situation to make it seem like you’re the asshole.

I don’t care about being called names but what I find really humiliating is the fact that some of you really seem to believe that I lie and screw my customers or anyone else in the world. I had enough opportunities in my life to get rich quick the dirty way, but I have enough self respect no to do so.

Honestly, it hurts. Please ignore reality and stop saying I lied.

Sophiestication Software is not about making money, it’s about making great apps. Or to be more precise: Make money to keep making apps. The App Store proved to be a wonderful way to sustain this, and I’m sure the Mac App Store will do so to.

Sophiestication Software is not about making money. Sophiestication is about making money. The App Store will make me money.

It’s obvious that many of you are simply overreacting. Overreacting to some text I wrote over three years ago and forgot about until this thursday.

It’s obvious that many of you are simply overreacting. Overreacting to some text I wrote over three years ago and will now claim to have forgotten about.

You are beneath me.