On 20 Jul 2007, at 17:03, Neil Laubenthal wrote: >> ... >> My guess is that these deals are worth it to the authors. ... > > I'm not saying that the authors aren't making any money . . . .but > back when the first MacHeist happened a couple of folks on various > lists (can't remember if it was here or elsewhere; but they were > shareware authors of some note . . . you've heard of their stuff) > did an analysis based on what MacHeist's gross income was and how > much went to the authors. IIRC, the payments to authors were down > in the 5000 or so range . . . and the gross receipts of the > MacHeist program were up in the several hundreds of thousands. > ... > I realize that there is some benefit because of the exposure . . . > and each developer will naturally make his/her own decision. > However, if your package normally sells for 25 bucks and you take > 5000 for 1000 copies; then your net for each copy is only 5 > bucks . . . but you still get all of the support load for those > additional 1000 users as well as the discounted upgrades (assuming > that a particular developer does discounted upgrades and that the > MacHeist purchasers actually upgrade. > > Now each developer made their own economic analysis of course . . . > and I can't fault any of them for participating or not . . . but > for the guy who did the least amount of work (the MacHeist guys) to > take the vast majority of the profit just seems to fly in the face > of maintaining a healthy shareware development community. I remember this discussion quite clearly, too. IIRC it was started by a guy who was blogging, "why isn't my software in this bundle? Well, let me tell you..." I have no beef with him at all - he was clearly just explaining why MacHeist wasn't worth it to him, but I'm sure I afterwards read of other developers who were quite happy with the deal. I'll bet if you were to google "MacHeist" you'll find all these discussions, so the authors whose software is being sold this time around are hardly going in blind. I'll bet that many of the buyers of this bundle will use 3 or 4 of these apps and barely ever touch the other half-dozen or more - so in this case the 5 bucks net being received is money for nothing. There will be no support costs for those purchasers and they are sales that wouldn't otherwise have been made. I feel you may underestimate the cost of advertising and marketing in your analysis above, but whatever - it's the nature of business that profit makes ventures worthwhile. Clearly all the authors were willing participants and don't need defending (although, fair enough, buy directly from the authors if you prefer to support them that way). Personally I have a very strong bias against shareware - perhaps a somewhat unreasonable bias - and have only ever once paid money for a downloaded app. With their fully-functional non-commercial-use license Grisoft have made far more money through me & my business customers. Stroller.