Movable Type Answers Critics with Pricing Remodel

 
 
By Matthew Hicks  |  Posted 2004-06-17
 
 
 
Six Apart this week sought to calm critics of its Movable Type pricing plans by unveiling licensing changes to its popular Weblogging software.

Late on Tuesday, Six Apart Ltd. co-founder and CEO Mena Trott posted a message on the companys Web site outlining the revamped pricing scheme.

Paying customers can create an unlimited number of blogs and can choose an option for an unlimited number of posters, while the terms for the free version, which allows one author and three blogs and does not include support, remain unchanged.

"We feel that what weve come up with is great for both Six Apart and our customers," Trott wrote in her posting. "We were able to create pricing that enables us to invest more in the development of Movable Type while also removing the limitations that many users felt were too restrictive."

The changes followed an outcry from some Movable Type bloggers when Six Apart introduced paid licenses in May with its release of a developer edition of Movable Type 3.0. Prior to the release, Six Apart offered Movable Type for free except when used for commercial purposes.

Bloggers who had criticized the licenses largely complained about them being overly restrictive in the number of blogs and users allowed. Six Apart officials at the time said they needed to revamp pricing and licensing to help pay for software development and to offer enterprises more standard licensing terms for the software.

Six Apart officials could not be reached for further comment on the new licensing. But in her message this week, Trott wrote that the company realized from user feedback that it needed to alter its pricing and spent the past few weeks considering its options.

Along with being able to publish any number of blogs, personal users now can purchase a $99.95 edition for an unlimited number of authors or keep the basic $69.95 plan, which allows as many as five authors.

For commercial users such as enterprises, Six Apart also removed caps on the number of blogs that can be published and changed to a per-seat licensing plan that starts at $199.99. Details of the new pricing are available here.

The licensing changes this week largely drew cheers from Movable Type-powered bloggers, some of whom wrote that they would be more willing to upgrade. Six Apart is planning a general release of Movable Type 3.0 in the next couple months, which will be a free upgrade for users of the developer edition, Trott wrote.

"Personally, I think theyve got it perfect now," blogger Jon Michaels wrote on his Monsters from the Id blog. "[It] makes it really easy for people to do what they want with the software for not much money."

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