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Last post Author Topic: MOGware's FileHamster (Complaint)  (Read 16332 times)

Mogware Support

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Re: MOGware's FileHamster (Complaint)
« Reply #25 on: September 10, 2009, 10:55:35 AM »
We never saw this thread over here on DonationCoder or else we would have responded earlier...

We're certainly sorry to see we have a few unhappy folks here but I'll do my best to try and answer some of the points mentioned above.

The ‘UpgradeBubbles’ were a controversial topic internally to Mogware so their implementation was carefully thought out.  The ‘UpgradeBubbles’ are only present in the free version.  We needed a way to try and convert our free users into upgrading; These small bubbles enabled us to remind the free users in a less than obtrusive manner that wouldn’t halt their workflow by randomly rearranging dialog buttons.  The ‘UpgradeBubbles’ slowly ramp in over the course of 2 weeks and only promote our products as we try to encourage them to upgrade.  If the user chooses not to upgrade, the bubble will then slowly transition over to an alternative ad campaign.  At the end of the day, we can’t only have free users and still sustain the tool.  At least this way, the users who don’t want to pay for the tool can still use the tool.

I see some other threads here on FileHamster which I will try to chime in on them throughout the day…


40hz

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Re: MOGware's FileHamster (Complaint)
« Reply #26 on: September 21, 2009, 11:53:40 PM »

The ‘UpgradeBubbles’ were a controversial topic internally to Mogware so their implementation was carefully thought out.  The ‘UpgradeBubbles’ are only present in the free version.  We needed a way to try and convert our free users into upgrading;

Understood.

But "carefully thought out" how?

Did the decision to use phrases like "convert our free users," and terms like "UpgradeBubbles," help sell what management wanted to do to the dissenters in your company?

Calling a nag pop-up an UpgradeBubble doesn't change the fact that it is still just another nag device. I'd personally have a lot more respect for what FH is trying to accomplish if it could stop using euphemisms and just call things what they are.

It also would be nice if we could drop the sales lingo and switch to standard English.

You don't "convert" people. You convince them to buy. So next time, instead of saying "convert our free users into upgrading" why not just say "convince the people who downloaded the free version to buy the paid version."

Quote
The ‘UpgradeBubbles’ slowly ramp in over the course of 2 weeks and only promote our products as we try to encourage them to upgrade.  If the user chooses not to upgrade, the bubble will then slowly transition over to an alternative ad campaign.

And since FH is using a nag feature to do this, why not be honest and say:

"This product is designed to bug the people who downloaded the free version of FileHamster with increasing frequency until they (hopefully) buy the paid version. Furthermore, if the original nag technique doesn't work, this software will automatically switch over to using some other negative incentive to further encourage them to buy it."

Maybe not as pretty sounding. But a lot more up front.


Quote
At the end of the day, we can’t only have free users and still sustain the tool.  At least this way, the users who don’t want to pay for the tool can still use the tool.

Part of the problem is that FH is trying to straddle the fence.

I think you guys really need to decide what you want to do, and stop playing 'head games' with yourselves and your potential customers. Because "at the end of the day" a so-called 'free' product is either free - or it's not. So if, for whatever reason, your company really can't afford to offer a (genuinely) free version of FileHamster - then just don't offer one. That's a perfectly understandable and acceptable situation.

I think it would be better if FileHamster either went the 'time limited evaluation' route; or offered a 'feature limited' freeware edition. That's what almost everyone else does, so I'm guessing either approach plays equally well in the marketplace.

Look at it this way: When somebody upgrades from a feature limited version of a product to the full version, they're gaining something positive (i.e. more and better features) for their money. When somebody buys a product after an evaluation period they're gaining something positive (i.e. the ability to continue using the product) for their money.

But when you use some form of nagging technology, what additional value does your customer get for their money? The simple answer is: Nothing other than relief from an arbitrarily imposed annoyance. Doesn't sound like too good a way to "win friends and influence people."

If you had to pick one of these three droids, which would you choose?

  • Droid#1-  "I'll work for you for free - for 30 days only - doing anything you command. At the end of that time, you can either buy me, or we call it quits. No hard feelings either way."

  • Droid#2- "I'll work for you for free - and for an indefinite period of time - as long as you will at least consider buying me. But I will only work on a limited group of tasks. However, if you do eventually buy me, I'll do anything you command. No hard feelings either way."

  • Droid#3- "I'll work for you for free - and for an indefinite period of time - doing anything you command. But I will also ask you to buy me several times a day (and with increasing frequency) for the first two weeks. If that doesn't work, I'll just try something else to convince you. And I'll keep this up until you either do buy me - or get fed up and kick me out.


Now think about the message FH's UpgradeBubbles and "slowly transition over to an alternative ad campaign" approaches are sending to its potential customers.

I'm not surprised UpgradeBubbles were a "controversial topic internally."



Just my 2¢  :)

------

**NOTE: Any use of the  words 'you' and 'your' should be taken in the collective sense. Please don't interpret my comments as being personally directed at anyone working for FileHamster.


« Last Edit: September 22, 2009, 10:48:58 AM by 40hz »

Mogware Support

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Re: MOGware's FileHamster (Complaint)
« Reply #27 on: September 22, 2009, 01:34:17 PM »
Thanks for your response...

It's funny you mention the various droids as this month marked the release of a new version of FileHamster that more closely follows some of what you outlined so hopefully this means we are falling more closely in line with what you've expressed in your previous post.  :)

We have stopped promoting the 'free' version and in its place have an evaluation version that follows Droid #1.  During the 30 days, it unlocks all the features but also includes some visual indicators designed to remind the user they are using an evaluation version.  Unfortunately, these visual indicators do include the annoying bubble you are not so fond of but those bubbles do ramp in over time so they are not so annoying in the beginning.  At the end of the 30 day evaluation period, we had two choices...Cut off the user or just leave the evaluation running in an expired state.  We opted the latter as that still offers those users a choice to continue using the product in that state; sometimes, even the expired state is all a user needs and we'd rather see them continue to use the software rather than forcibly cutting them off.

As for the bubbles, I know some folks will be more sensitive to them than others.  I personally would rather have a simple bubble pop up which can be ignored instead of the jarring feeling that comes from my workflow being halted because a dialog buttons were rearranged.

Hopefully the new evaluation version of FileHamster will help encourage users to upgrade to the paid version as that only helps us further the development of the tool, and for those users who choose not to upgrade to the paid version will be pleasantly surprised that we left them with a free alternative; a free alternative that only reminds them they are using an expired evaluation.   :)

40hz

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Re: MOGware's FileHamster (Complaint)
« Reply #28 on: September 22, 2009, 02:12:21 PM »


We have stopped promoting the 'free' version and in its place have an evaluation version that follows Droid #1.  During the 30 days, it unlocks all the features but also includes some visual indicators designed to remind the user they are using an evaluation version.  Unfortunately, these visual indicators do include the annoying bubble you are not so fond of but those bubbles do ramp in over time so they are not so annoying in the beginning.  At the end of the 30 day evaluation period, we had two choices...Cut off the user or just leave the evaluation running in an expired state.  We opted the latter as that still offers those users a choice to continue using the product in that state; sometimes, even the expired state is all a user needs and we'd rather see them continue to use the software rather than forcibly cutting them off.

It's nice of FH to do that (except for the bubbles ;D) but I think it raises the  question of just how serious FH is about people buying the product. A rule that goes unenforced is no rule at all. And it tends to reduce credibility.

I still think you'd be better off with a free version that will only monitor something like 10 files and one folder after the expiry point is reached. But maybe that's just me.

Either way, I wish you all success with your product. It's a very useful niche application that I'm sure will find its place in the market. I had tried a previous release for about a month some time ago. It worked well for the most part. I thought FH had real potential despite what appeared to be some occasion quirks in its behavior. (I've since gone over to a full VCS so I haven't paid much attention to FH since.)

Suggestion: develop and market an add-in version of FH for use with screenwriting and creative writing apps. (Think: Final Draft, Movie Magic, Truby's Blockbuster, StoryView, et al.) Possibly even license it to be built into the app itself.

Because if anybody is paranoid about losing a revision, it's screenwriters and authors.

Income opportunity (hint, hint)!

Luck! :Thmbsup:
« Last Edit: September 22, 2009, 02:19:11 PM by 40hz »

tranglos

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Re: MOGware's FileHamster (Complaint)
« Reply #29 on: September 22, 2009, 02:56:01 PM »
Because if anybody is paranoid about losing a revision, it's screenwriters and authors.

And translators! Not because my work is so earth-shatteringly novel, but because if I lose my work, I won't be able to redo it from scratch and still meet the deadline.

I am running backups on two external drives now - that's in addition to real-time backup on a local drive! ::)

Spoiler
About Missing the Deadline thing... The closest association in my mind is a quote from a Stephen King novel:
— Well, did you see anything?
— I didn't see nothing! And I never want to see it again!



And 40Hz, great post about the euphemisms. You got a standing ovation from me. (Well, I did actually clap hands in front of the screen, and that's close.)
« Last Edit: September 22, 2009, 02:58:27 PM by tranglos »

babouras

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Re: MOGware's FileHamster (Complaint)
« Reply #30 on: September 30, 2009, 08:31:43 AM »
Could someone please inform me how to get rid the constant sound of a boxing glove that is part of a Filehamster's buuble ad? I can accept its appearance once, but the moment Filehamster initiates and keeps a copy, this annoying sound repeats itself until I close Filehamster. I will have to uninstall the program if there's no solution.

tomos

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Re: MOGware's FileHamster (Complaint)
« Reply #31 on: September 30, 2009, 08:41:33 AM »
Could someone please inform me how to get rid the constant sound of a boxing glove that is part of a Filehamster's buuble ad? I can accept its appearance once, but the moment Filehamster initiates and keeps a copy, this annoying sound repeats itself until I close Filehamster. I will have to uninstall the program if there's no solution.

that's funny - I dont get that and it's not in options here (FH 'Advanced') - is that the free version that you're using?
(maybe it's another 'incentive' to purchase :-\)
Tom

tranglos

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Re: MOGware's FileHamster (Complaint)
« Reply #32 on: September 30, 2009, 08:54:37 AM »
Could someone please inform me how to get rid the constant sound of a boxing glove that is part of a Filehamster's buuble ad? I can accept its appearance once, but the moment Filehamster initiates and keeps a copy, this annoying sound repeats itself until I close Filehamster. I will have to uninstall the program if there's no solution.

Is this a FileHamster sound, or could it be one of Windows built-in souds? (I don't like it when Windows plays an error sound at 3am, so I always disable all these sound effects in Control Panel, and don't really know what sounds come bundled with Windows).

Anyway, if this is a FileHamster sound, there is probably a .wav or an .mp3 file installed with the program. Check under the folder where FH is installed. If you find any sound files there, delete them (or rename them), so that FH cannot find them.  It should not cause any visible errors in the program. If it does, it's a bug that you can report to FH.

If there are no sound files under FH folder, then perhaps this is a Windows sound. Try Control Panel -> Sounds, and checkk the sound schemes. Applications can add their own sounds there for various events, and you can disable individual sounds or all of them.

(I don't have FH installed at the moment, so I cannot check this for you, but is there no option in Preferences to disable sounds? Though I guess you'd have tried that already :) )

Mogware Support

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Re: MOGware's FileHamster (Complaint)
« Reply #33 on: September 30, 2009, 10:24:41 AM »
I'm not sure what sound you are talking about...FileHamster doesn't play any sounds with the bubbles; although, allowing the user to specify a sounds when a bubble pops up or disappears might be a fun little 'optional' feature.   :Thmbsup:

Upgrading to any of the paid versions will eliminate the ad bubbles; The free version or evaluation version is for folks to try out the product and does contain a few annoyances.  We do allow the evaluation version to keep working after the trial period for those users who don't care about the ad bubbles.  Sounds like you may be at that point where you might want to consider buying the full version.

tranglos

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Re: MOGware's FileHamster (Complaint)
« Reply #34 on: September 30, 2009, 10:52:12 AM »
I'm not sure what sound you are talking about...FileHamster doesn't play any sounds with the bubbles; although, allowing the user to specify a sounds when a bubble pops up or disappears might be a fun little 'optional' feature.   :Thmbsup:

Thanks, Mogware!

Babouras: in that case you may have sounds configured in Windows to play at certain "events", such as a program popping up a notification message. Do check the Control Panel, you may well find the answer there.