Should I stay or should I go? SA speaks up on MT licensing issues.

Well the firestorm of controversy that swept across the blogosphere after the announcement on Thursday has definitely had an effect, though it’s hard to say if it’ll make a lot of difference for some people. Six Apart has come out with a clarification and adjustment to the licensing schemes for MT3D.

Here’s a rundown on what’s changed: The restriction on running on servers with only 1 CPU wasn’t meant to be in the licenses in the first place and has been struck from it as of now. If you’re already running version 2.661 and do not wish to upgrade your license is not changing from the one you agreed to at the time you downloaded 2.661 so you can still make as many weblogs and authors as you like. For folks who make use of multiple weblogs as parts of a single weblog you don’t have to worry about counting the sub-weblogs as part of your total license usage. As far as Six Apart is concerned a “weblog” is everything that can be accessed from a single URL so if you use 5 weblogs to create parts of a single one at http://www.yourfunkythoughts.com then they consider that still a single weblog as far as the license is considered. That alone will be a big relief to many people. Also, inactive authors and/or weblogs that you are keeping around for archival purposes will NOT count toward your license limits.

Now for the adjustments to pricing. The biggest question for most of us, myself included, was the limits on number of authors and weblogs on the personal licenses. The thinking behind the scaled licenses was simple and perfectly reasonable: Someone who hosts 50 weblogs for his buddies should have to pay more than someone who hosts a weblog for themselves. Six Apart admits that the volume licensing they came up with didn’t address a number of different scenarios all that well so they’re going to adjust things a bit:

For the Personal Edition, we’re increasing the number of allowed authors from 3 to 5. The number of allowed weblogs will still be 5.

We’re adding a new “Personal Edition Add-On” package that gives someone who has purchased a Personal Edition license the ability to buy 1 new weblog and 1 new author for $10. You can purchase as many additional author/weblog packs as you want, each for $10.

The volume licensing for the personal edition will be eliminated, but if you’ve already bought one of the packages listed you’ll receive a new license which will increase your blog and author limits. Personal Edition Volume I will go up to 10 authors and blogs and Volume II will go up to 13 of each. The price for the personal license, however, remains unchanged and there’s no change in the blog/author restrictions on the free version.

OK this helps the situation for a lot of MT fans out there, but it still leaves a lot to be desired. Here’s what staying with MT3 would mean for me:

Of the 9 authors I currently have defined, I could probably delete one of them as he’s never made use of the account (Hairboy). I’d been keeping it around on the off-chance he wanted to use it. Eric hasn’t used his in awhile, but I’d still consider it an “active” account. The Minx’s account hasn’t been used since last year’s Blogathon so it could be considered inactive, but kept for archival purposes. The same is true for a guest account I set up for my sister’s niece when she was guest blogging for her. So I could reasonably declare that I have 6 active authors I’d have to cover with licenses.

Now I have 7 blogs total. I could possibly argue that the Jenkins Online site is “inactive” and kept for archival purposes though the truth is we just haven’t been very good at updating it. The other six are all still active and are all definitely distinct blogs unto themselves. So this means I’d need a license that would cover at a minimum 6 blogs/authors and possibly 7 blogs/authors if I started making use of Jenkins Online like I keep intending to.

Under this new plan that means I’m spending between $79.90 to $89.85 if I sign up right now or $109.90 to $119.85 if I sign up later. If I come up with a new idea for a new blog later or want to add in an author I’ll have to bump up by another $10. That’s still some hard numbers to swallow at this point in time considering what the competition is offering and when you factor in that 3.0D isn’t coming with a boatload of new goodies it makes the decision even harder.

Now, in all fairness, they’ve implied that the General Release in a couple of months is where the goodies are going to show up, but it’s also clear that it looks like they’re going to rely on third parties to come up with those goodies for them through the Developer Plugin contest they announced. One would hope that there would also be plenty of Six Apart plugins tossed into the general release as well, but there’s no guarantee that will be the case. So as it stands right now it’s not worth the money for me to upgrade and continue to use MT. At least, not without a clear understanding of what I should be able to expect in the way of plugins once the general release hits the Net.

Spending $80 to $90 right now for a version that comes with the promise of greater things is a tough sell when I could go spend $45 on pMachine Pro and get a lot of what I want right this second without any limits on number of blogs or authors. If I wait until the general release to see what kind of goodies I would get I run the risk of the intro pricing offer being discontinued and my total cost going up to a point where I would be comparing the general release versus a package like ExpressionEngine at $149 and then the goodies included had better be pretty damned impressive to overcome the limitations on authors/blogs, on which EE has no such limits. That’s totally disregarding the fact that I just got a free personal license to EE or that they plan on offering discounted pricing in the near future to folks who want to jump ship.

Now don’t get me wrong. I don’t have a problem with the idea that someone with 50 blogs should pay more than someone with 3, but when you consider the prices being asked and the lack of new features in comparison to the rest of the packages that cost money and don’t impose limits on blogs/authors it makes it hard to justify the price in my mind. The whole reason I never jumped ship to pMachine Pro way back when it was first released even though it offered more of what I wanted was that $45 price tag. Sure, it offered more but not by such a great amount that it overshadowed the fact that MT was free. When I factored in the fact that I could come very close to pMachine Pro’s goodies using plugins on MT the choice was easy. If I were making that same decision today I’d probably end up buying pMachine Pro. MT3.0D doesn’t match up feature-wise to pMachine Pro right now. It costs $25 more and has limits on authors/blogs that pMachine Pro doesn’t.

On another blog Anil Dash asked what it would take to make the licenses work right. Here’s what it would take from me:

Ideally the price for personal licenses should come down considerably. Using the $9.95 per blog/author rule they set up I’d say that the price for the base 5/5 personal license shouldn’t be any higher than $50. That’s still $5 more expensive than pMachine Pro which is unrestricted so if it were me I’d take it even lower, but it’s still better than the $70 price they’re asking now. Admittedly, this still wouldn’t convince me to buy MT3 over pMachine as they currently stand, but if the general release has decent goodies to go with it then this price level would be a lot more palatable. At the very least the intro price should become the standard price. $100 is going to be a big barrier for a lot of people. They may start with the free version and as soon as they hit a limit they’ll jump ship.

For me to even consider staying at the current pricing I would have to told right now what I should expect in the way of new goodies come the general release. I want a list that says: “In addition to whatever cool stuff comes out of the contest, we plan to introduce the following plugins at the time of general release…” That list would have to include the following:

  1. The File Manager functionality from TypePad. MT needs this badly and it’s one of the things I’ve been looking for in other packages for a long time now. Pivot has something like it already and it doesn’t even use a mySQL database.
  2. The Insert Image/File functionality from TypePad. Again, this is something that MT has needed for a very long time.
  3. Category Hierarchy as promised for MT Pro. David Raynes is already beta testing a 3.0 compatible version of his SubCategories plugin so this is one requirement that’s being met.
  4. Improved Notifications as promised for MT Pro. No idea what the actual plans were for that, but what MT has now definitely needs improvement.  Chad Everett is looking at what it would take to port MT-Notifier to 3.0 and that would make me happy to a degree, but that should be one aspect of a much improved notification system for MT. In my mind both Chad and David should be contracted by Six Apart to develop those two plugins in agreement to make them part of the core of MT like they did with Jay Allen’s search hack. I don’t think either of these two fine gentlemen would object to that.
  5. Photo Album Integration as promised for MT Pro. Whether it’s the same as what’s in TypePad is really up to them, but SOMETHING would be nice as my wife keeps bugging me about it. grin
  6. TypeLists like at TypePad would be icing on the cake. This one isn’t something I’d HAVE to have to consider sticking with MT, but its inclusion certainly would be an added bonus.

If I were told that these things would be in the general release I’d be much more likely to sign on now at the intro pricing. Additional things that would be icing on the cake, but not essential would include:

  1. Threaded comments. I really want threaded comments.
  2. A better user registration system of some sort that would allow regular visitors to track everything that’s new since the last time they visited. Entries, comments, whatever.
  3. An event calendar would be lovely.
  4. Polls would be nice too.

Without knowing that this stuff lies in wait for the general release I’m left to compare MT3 with everything else on the market at this time and even if I ignore the free and open source projects, MT3 doesn’t stack up well against the other pay-for-play offerings for the simple reason that they offer one thing that MT3 doesn’t and that’s the lack of restrictions on blogs/authors. Right, wrong, or otherwise that’s something that is a big consideration for a lot of us.

Right now it’s looking like I’ll be leaving MovableType behind which isn’t necessarily something I’m happy about. The fact that I managed to snag a free license to ExpressionEngine is certainly a factor in this. Someone pointed out to me that the license is for one year and then they may charge for the next version and this is very true, but this is the same with MT3 going forward as well. Six Apart has already stated that major new releases may incur an upgrade charge.

Just the same, I might not use EE for running Stupid Evil Bastard. I’m still considering using Drupal for that as it has some of the comment features I want and EE doesn’t. I will probably put EE to use to run the rest of the blogs I have here such as my wife’s, my sister’s, my daughter’s, my mother’s and Jenkins Online and Michigan Blogs.

So what about the rest of you? You sticking around or looking elsewhere?

29 thoughts on “Should I stay or should I go? SA speaks up on MT licensing issues.

  1. I’m extremely conflicted.

    On the one hand I would like to stay with MT. I’m familiar with MT, I know how to pretty much get what I want from it (template-wise), and I’m used to the interface and where stuff is. Plus, I’m excited to see what kind of cool plugins people come up with for MT3.

    On the other hand, I still think 6A is missing one of the points, which is that the pricing is still too steep for personal users, and the free version is too limited. I posted my “ideal” price list here: http://www.gamewhore.org/backlog/2004/05/15/000159
    *And*, like you, I have no idea what, if anything, to expect out of a general release. Was Mena’s post stating that features would be filled out in point releases made before they decided to do a Dev Edition? Does that mean the General Release will be just bug fixes, or will it have additional features? Or will it just be released with the idea that, at that point, there will enough plugins to start playing with to make it worth the upgrade?

    Plus, I still need them to define “paid services” and “major upgrade” so I have some idea going into it what to expect. They should also say what’s meant by a “guaranteed” upgrade path, and explain why the free version doesn’t have that, and if this means the end of the free version after 3.0.

    I also wouldn’t be averse to them creating a structure similar to what we’ve got at HiveMail for licensing, which is offer an unsupported license that’s cheaper than a license that comes with full company-backed support. I don’t need support…and I don’t like the idea of paying for something I’ll never use.

    I’m not ready to jump ship just yet. I’ve been excited over the last couple days thinking about moving to a system that doesn’t have to deal with rebuilds, a system that’s written in PHP so I can dive under the hood if I want to (since I know PHP+MySQL but couldn’t code in Perl if my life depended on it), like EE or WordPress.

    I don’t know what I’m going to do yet…I’m waiting to see if they change anything else licensing-wise and what the general release will look like.

  2. Sticking around, with 2.661 for now. $70 is too much to pay for something which was free two days ago, and frankly, hasnt had *that* much extra added to it.

    I’m resigned to the thought that MT3 is being pointed at corporates, and 6A are abandoning the personal MT community entirely. The prices are high, the features are low, and unless something major changes in the commercial release, there are better featured alternatives.

    I too got a free EE license, so I’m going to test that out, that or Drupal will be where I will compare MT3 Commercial when it’s finally out.

  3. Under this new plan that means I’m spending between $79.90 to $89.85 if I sign up right now or $109.90 to $119.85 if I sign up later. If I come up with a new idea for a new blog later or want to add in an author I’ll have to bump up by another $10.

    What?  Are you running a charity, Les?  If all of the authors split that cost, then you’re really not talking about that much money, are you?

    Now, in all fairness, they’ve implied that the General Release in a couple of months is where the goodies are going to show up, but it’s also clear that it looks like they’re going to rely on third parties to come up with those goodies for them through the Developer Plugin contest they announced.

    Patently untrue.  I’m not sure where you read that.  They are still taking feature requests in Mantis in fact.  MT development marches on internally, and in fact, from what I read, there will be a team dedicated only to MT…

    Let me ask you a question, Les.  Aside from the loss of introductory pricing, where’s the fire?

  4. For now I’m sticking with MT3. Today’s announcement does put me in a better position, although as I’ve said on my blog I’m still not completely satisfied. I don’t really have the time to switch to another system right now, and I’d like to wait for WordPress to mature a little before I switch (proper multiple weblog support for example).

    Another MT-powered site that I run will be sticking with 2.661 because I would have to buy a commercial license for it under the new restrictions, and it just isn’t worth the outlay. I’m intending to lock down that installation so that if any vunerabilities arise it should be alright unpatched. The only script that needs to be made public for it is the search script and I can easily replace that with something custom-made in PHP.

  5. Aside from the loss of introductory pricing, where’s the fire?
    That kind of *is* the fire. IMO 6A would be smart to keep this pricing until after the General Release is out.

  6. What? Are you running a charity, Les? If all of the authors split that cost, then you’re really not talking about that much money, are you?

    You’re right, Jay. If I wanted to ask them to split the cost it might not be so bad, but I think you’re overlooking the nature of the situation here.

    One author is my wife and another is my daughter. Seeing as I’m the only income earner in the family I’d be picking up their cost anyway. Another author is my sister who, honestly, has a hard time being able to afford keeping her dial-up access to the internet going from month to month let alone chipping in on the cost of MT, though if I were to ask she’d probably try. Another author is my mother who is retired and living on a fixed income. She has already offered to let me drop her blog altogether if I need to to be compliant with the license terms, but I don’t want to have to drop her blog as I think what she has to say is pretty cool and she gets a kick out of hearing from folks who stop by her blog. Finally, the other author is my buddy Eric who doesn’t post that often that I feel it’s right for me to ask him to chip in, but whose input and addition to my blog I feel adds to it’s worth.

    So I suppose in a way I am running a bit of a charity here. At least two of the blogs and three of the authors here wouldn’t be active at all if not for my generosity. I could set my mother and sister up on Live Journal or the free Blogger I suppose and Eric probably wouldn’t be upset with me if I removed his ability to contribute. I could also drop the “root blog” (Jenkins Online) seeing as we’re not really using it and get rid of Michigan Blogs and that would move me into only needing to buy the 5/5 personal license.

    But that personal license is still going to set me back $70 without offering me more than what I can get for $45 in something like pMachine Pro. A package with which I would get more features and still be able to host my mother, my sister, and have guest authors at will. Do you honestly mean to tell me you think I should spend $25 more for something that let’s me do less? How is that in any way an intelligent thing to do?

    In all truth, I could probably drop everything except for SEB and just use the free license. My wife has also already offered to give up her blog. My daughter probably wouldn’t care if I moved her to Live Journal as she rarely updates her blog as it is. My sister would understand, might even consider moving to Live Journal herself. Mom and Eric I’ve already covered. SEB is the largest of all the blogs here and the most active. I could certainly take this route, not spend a damned dime, and be perfectly within the free license.

    But I don’t want to go that route. I don’t want to give up the blogs I’m hosting or the people I’ve asked to contribute. I don’t want to have to sit on 2.661 and miss out on new goodies that come out in the future. The only person new goodies matters to is me. Most of the plugins installed are here purely for SEB. The only one used on any of the other blogs is MT Macro so they can have smilies. Everyone else here isn’t goodies obsessed, only me and I admit that. Half the joy I get from running my blog is in getting new toys and new ideas and playing with them to see what kind of damage I can do. Writing entries is only half the fun of what I do with this. It’s like a big sandbox I get to play with. Six Apart has just severely restricted what I can do in my sandbox without spending a lot of money.

    Patently untrue. I’m not sure where you read that. They are still taking feature requests in Mantis in fact. MT development marches on internally, and in fact, from what I read, there will be a team dedicated only to MT…

    I confess that implication was what I read into the announcements and isn’t an actual stated policy on the part of Six Apart and I apologize for making it sound like it was anything other than that.

    If there’s a team devoted specifically to MT that’s great, but what does that mean? What’s coming down the pike that makes the money being spent worth it? How often should we expect to see updates? What is going to constitute a major upgrade which may require a fee? What are SA’s plans with regards to charging for big plugins?

    Let me ask you a question, Les. Aside from the loss of introductory pricing, where’s the fire?

    No fire, just don’t see the point in waiting. I’ve waited since February of 2003 when MT Pro was announced. That was over a year ago. I had every intention of buying what was promised in MT Pro, not MT3. The pricing being asked for here is what I would have expected for MT Pro. This isn’t, as has been pointed out many times, MT Pro. Not even close. We’ve been told “be patient, it’ll be worth it” over and over. Now MT3 is here and we’re being told the same thing again. Be patient, it’ll be worth it only now we’re being asked to pay for something that limits what we can do with it on the promise that wonderfully amazing things will be coming “real soon” now that’ll make it all worthwhile.

    You’ll pardon me if I’ve got a bit of skepticism at this point…

  7. The tweaking of the licenses may tip me back into staying with MT (though I’ll probably stick with 2.661 until the General Release of MT3 is out).  The change-over is not something I want to do if I can avoid it, and (once I read it in more detail) maybe I can, now.

    We’ll see.  More detailed reading to follow.

  8. For now I’m sticking around while looking elsewhere

    I think my mainpoint for staying is that it’s dead easy to fiddle with MTs templates (At least to me). I was looking at WP last night and the templates scares the bleep out of me and I don’t know if I’m willing to invest as much time into learning the WP templates as I’ve done learning the MT templates. Granted I’m no coding whiz, but I’m finally at the point where I’m able to make MT do what I want it to do within what’s currently possible.

    The only two things which makes me salivate like a rabid dog when thinking about WP, is the pricetag and sub categories.

    If I knew that easier sub categorizing would be in the non developer version of MT 3 I’d stay with MT.

  9. I’m going to stick with MT for the time being (older version), but as I was already looking at other tools, I’ll likely be moving on at some point.

    What drove me to look at other packages was the long fallow time on MT, combined with the eternal seeming “promise” of extra core features. I wanted extra features to be able to do what I do, and I wanted to be able to charge for my development services using MT - which I think is a great package user-interface-wise. I do think it’s nice that they’ve removed the restriction on charging for one’s services - but even so, the owners of the software will have to buy a license, even for a personal version. That may make the difference to some people, particularly non-profits and microbusinesses (my primary client base). I was seriously looking at MT as a one-stop shop, and building in a kickback to MT every time I used their software for a client solution. I tried contacting the people at SA about formalizing something like that a while ago, but received no response. I guess this can be considered their “response”. I’m not all that wild about the new limitations combined with the dearth of new features. I may change my stance at some later point, but right now I don’t feel all that urgent about migrating any of my projects to MT 3.0.

    I guess I know what my May / June project will be: learn these other packages.

  10. Ummm, Les, you were a beta tester were you not?

    Did you not get your email?

    At very worse they could all have their own free version…

  11. There is a photo upload capability in MT 2.661!
    Upload file -> Upload Image -> Gives you many many options regarding how you want to upload that image, including proportions, and keeping proportions, posting as a new entry or just giving you the HTML. Already there chief.

  12. This couldn’t come at a more bizarre time for me. I’ve been fighting with my host -for months- to get my MT installation unblocked (so i can do an export).  Finally I bite the bullet to get a new host and find that MT is all different.  I’d snooped around other blog/cms platforms in the meanwhile, which i’m happy about doing, but honestly just wanted my MT back.  Under the conditions now it’s not really going to fit into what I was planning so it’s looking like either wordpress or drupal, or plone i guess. The latter seems ‘stiff’ though.  I guess it’s a better time than I had thought for building my own linux (debian please) to run an open source cms to host all of my friends pages.

  13. Yes I was a beta tester, Jay. You know that already. And no, I didn’t get an email saying anything along the lines of what you’ve linked to. It’s possible that the email account I signed up with is acting flaky again (I’m slowly migrating myself off of it to one of the two other accounts I use) so it may have gotten eaten, but your link is the first I’ve heard of that.

    As for giving each one their own free version that feels a little like cheating to me. That and the whole reason I hadn’t switched to WordPress yet is I wanted to avoid having to install the script repeatedly for each person who’d be using it.

    Besides, I don’t want to avoid the charges because I do think Six Apart deserves to be compensated as I’ve said many times before. I don’t mind paying for a package, but if I’m going to pay for it then it has to be a good value in comparison to any other products I might pay for.

    I honestly wish I knew Ben and Mena so I could speak with them about this a little. The first thing I’d do is thank them for providing a quality script for free for so long. I don’t want them or anyone else thinking I’m trashing the Trotts’, Six Apart, or MovableType because I’m too cheap to pay for my software. I fully admit that I’m in a unique position that 95% of their user base probably won’t ever find themselves in so I’m not expecting anyone to bend over backwards to make me happy. But still, if I’m going to spend that kind of money I’m going to go where the best value is.

    Jared, I’m aware that MT currently has photo upload capability. That should be obvious by the fact that I have pictures in several of my entries. What I stated I was looking for was for them to be updated to something more robust along the lines of what they currently have in TypePad. That’s something a lot of folks have been asking for for a long time now.

  14. Here’s my take. You’ve got a company that is slow, very slow to ship, deals in an app for communication but has very poor communicating skills, has a low order of people skills, is overly impressed with itself, and is basically turning its back on all the little people that made it what it is.

    Plus, given their proven tendency to gouge, what will keep them from gouging more deeply down the road when you are really locked into the app.

    The whole blogsphere runs on trust and they haven’t shown themselves to be trustworthy.

  15. As someone looking at one day upgrading to MT, I can definatively say I would avoid it based on the price tag.

  16. As for the 6A damage control, its playing out an awful lot like “drunkenbatman” predicted here: This is why VCs bring in the MBAs, which is an excellent read.

    Massaging the pricing & license structure is a nice token effort to help, but it doesn’t help the fundamental brokenness of the setup. The question Anil asks over at the blog you linked to - “Just curious, since we’re willing to do what it takes to make the licenses work out right: What doesn’t work in the new licenses for you? How many weblogs and authors do you have on your install?” - is fundamentally the wrong question, for these reasons:

    1. Volume licensing for personal use based on # of weblogs and # of authors is stupid. The designers & developers using your products for personal use are the ones who will take your product, trojan horse style, to business & corporations that can afford to pay much more. Limiting their creativity & sandbox fun is a sure way to put an end to that. Paying for a personal license isn’t stupid though - its smart, and as you said Les $50 seems about right. If needs be you could charge per domain ala vBulletin. But as it is the 6A licences are akin to Jelsoft pricing vB on the number of forums you run on an installation & the number of admins you have looking after them.

    2. The current volume licensing structure (on # of weblogs & authors) doesn’t make much sense for businesses & corporations either, eg a ma & pa operation that savvy MT designer above consults for gets gouged paying roughly the same as SuperBigCo (the more efficient they are, the more weblogs they’ll use, but they get penalised for this!). This is infact unavoidable, because no licence structure is going to adequately obtain fair price for use from all businesses because they are obviously just way too varied. So you need to choose to either make your commercial licence v expensive, & milking money from the BigCo’s using your product while pricing out ma & pa, or let BigCo’s get a free ride for the sake of ma & pa. Of course they have tried to avoid this, but the metrics of weblogs & authors are the wrong ones to differentiate the various markets, which brings us to…

    What do corporations/big business really want (& are prepared to pay for) that separates them from the ma & pa “make do” operations & personal users?

    Easy: support & features.

    I noted on Tim Appnel’s ‘MT & eating’ post that the new developer edition includes stuff which is “handy for doing automated mirroring, versioning and integrating subsystems that link to core information.” If you look at the corporate CMS space, features like versioning & mirroring are what bigco’s want. Also stuff like document management, systems integration, workflow etc. These are features people will pay for. (For example, see sitepoint’s CMS pricing model based on domains & features. NB: they don’t have personal users.)

    And as for support, why not turn 6A into a service company like eZ Systems? They have been around for a while & have been quite successful at building a growing company around an open source product they give away for free. They have arrangements for partnerships, and make money from a variety of different services. They have a successful business model, and I’m pretty sure they all eat. In many ways I think if 6A adopted this model they would be far, far better off. Keep the goodwill with grassroots community, they get the product for free and keep giving back, while 6A capitalise on this contributed & in house expertise by consulting to large organisations with the $$ to spend.

    And lets not forget the major benefit - getting your product out there is a viral ad for your companies services. However it seems 6A must have thought this was a finite process - and there was a time when it would be finished, over, and they could start charging (yes I know there’s still a free version but its not the same). And from the decisions made on these assumptions, they’ve turned their community into a force who will actively discourage people from using their product in the future.

    So yeah, few thoughts, fwiw.

    luke

  17. I am moving my blog.  I am looking at EE as that I also snaged a licence but I am also looking at b2evolution.

  18. Hey Les, sorry for the lag.  I’m involved in an imbroglio over on my own blog, and so that’s taking up my time.

    Yes I was a beta tester, Jay. You know that already.  And no, I didn’t get an email saying anything along the lines of what you’ve linked to. It’s possible that the email account I signed up with is acting flaky again (I’m slowly migrating myself off of it to one of the two other accounts I use) so it may have gotten eaten, but your link is the first I’ve heard of that.

    Contact them…  I don’t know what they exact details of the discount are, but I would bet it’s significant.

    As for giving each one their own free version that feels a little like cheating to me. That and the whole reason I hadn’t switched to WordPress yet is I wanted to avoid having to install the script repeatedly for each person who’d be using it.

    I understand the PITA rationale, but it’s certainly not cheating.  If each person had a free personal install, those are still installations of MT which, for Six Apart, is also a countable metric.  Each of those people would have a relationship of sorts with 6A and wouldn’t be hidden behind one install.

    I think (don’t know… just think) that may be the other impetus behind this.  MT has a pretty damn big install base, but because people could create as many authors as they wanted (still can, really, if they don’t care about licenses and the honor system), there were a hell of a lot more MT USERS that were hidden from their view.

    A company who has a lot of users has a lot of clout but they need to know about those users in order to capitalize on them.

    This is all just speculation.  I don’t really know anything for fact.

    I don’t mind paying for a package, but if I’m going to pay for it then it has to be a good value in comparison to any other products I might pay for.

    Hopefully the feature release in summer gives you what you’re looking for.

    What I stated I was looking for was for them to be updated to something more robust along the lines of what they currently have in TypePad. That’s something a lot of folks have been asking for for a long time now.

    I couldn’t agree more.  I never ever use the upload feature in MT because I find it too limiting.  Just as one example (there are many), I don’t put my inline pictures in the same directory as my MT published stuff because sometimes, I remove everything in that directory and rebuild. I want true file manager capabilities.

    Luckily, with 3.0D it’s far more possible to create that functionality (either with a plugin or native code) than it was with 2.661.

    Anyhow, sorry again for the lag in response.  I’m dealing with a bonehead troll…  [sigh]

  19. Oh, one more thing.  I would KILL for a send notify functionality that doesn’t time out if you have over 1000 (or even 500!) subscribers.

    Kill, I say!

  20. In a recent interview Ben disclosed that Typepad had something like 75 perl modules while MT only had 5-8 and Mena said that it was hard to have a Typepad out of the box because of the amount of perl modules. Hence we mt users can’t have everything Typepad will and has. Also why a file manager ? You’re installing MT on your own server so you should be able to have file management access there shouldn’t you ?

  21. like 75 perl modules while MT only had 5-8

    MT 30D has 65.  Extra perl modules don’t hurt anything because they’re just text and install just as easily as the rest of MT.

    Also why a file manager ? You’re installing MT on your own server so you should be able to have file management access there shouldn’t you ?

    Absolutely.  I’ve made it even easier because I’m using Mac OS X action folders.  Whenever I put anything in this folder, it magically appears (through an scp operation) on my server.

    However, my server has a LOT of stuff on it.  I don’t put files in the same place which means that I still have to ssh in and put things where I want them.  It would be so nice to be able to do that through the command line. 

    I imagine that a lot of people less saavy than I would also appreciate not to have to fire up FTP to move things around…

  22. T 30D has 65. Extra perl modules don’t hurt anything because they’re just text and install just as easily as the rest of MT. Sorry musta listened wrong.

    There are somethings in Typepad esp Typelists that I would love in MT, lets see though, if they can’t build it into the system maybe some sorta advanced plugin that works of MTAmazon ?

  23. Jay, I’ve put up a reply on the Beta blog to the entry they put up about it there. As of this morning I still haven’t received an email about it, but I’ll try contacting them directly and see what they have to say.

    I can also see your point about how setting my relatives up with free versions might actually be a benefit for Six Apart as it gives them a better metric of who’s using the software. It’s definitely a PITA, but I can see the point and it is one worth considering. And no worries on the lag in the reply. I’ve seen you hopping around the blogosphere doing your part. I realize you must be pretty busy right now.

    Arvind, I have access to my own server, but my mother, sister, wife, and kid don’t. It’d be much easier for all of us if I had access to something like that within MT without having to pull up a separate program to access it. It doesn’t have to be everything-under-the-sun, just something for basic file management.

  24. I’m a look before you leap kind of gal and I’m going to wait until at least the end of May to watch the dust settle and see what package or packages emerge as the best alternative to MT.

    I’ve not completely decided to leave MT either. As a single author weblogger who’d contributed to MT in the past, my cost to upgrade is only $50 and if MT does clarify more about their future features it could be well worth paying for.

    I do run the risk of waiting too long and possibly losing the introductory pricing. But I think you are right - MT will not cut the intro pricing until they release the next version of 3.0.

    Fence sitter? Yes. I’ve invested time and energy getting my blog set up the way I want it. I don’t particularly want to have to spend a lot of time starting all over again with a new system if I don’t have to.

  25. Nothing wrong with being a fence sitter. You’ll note that I haven’t rushed my sites off of MT as of yet. Jay letting me know that Beta testers can expect a discount on the licensing has me once again debating my options.

    I’ve been playing with both WordPress and EE on my test site and have to admit I’m impressed with aspects of both, not to mention Drupal which I also like aspects of. However all would require learning new stuff, conversion of stuff, tweaking of stuff and so on. Not knowing what will come in the future with MT is also very frustrating as it would have an impact on my decision making process. I fully admit that I’m growing impatient and I’m as concerned about what sticking with MT would mean as what moving away from it would.

  26. Anyone have comments on Nucleus CMS?  I looked at it the other day and thought it looked very interesting.

  27. I’ve looked at it once or twice. The newest 3.0 version is a big improvement over past versions, but it’s hard to get a feel for how active the development is or the community around it. I should probably download it again and give it another whirl.

  28. I have also been looking at MamboServer which is quite a full blown CMS system and might be overkill for a simple blogging system.  Yet, it is something to look at anyway.

    The only problems I foresee in the immediate future is that migrating MT data into Mambo and Nucleus appears to be a little tricky.

    As for the activity on the development and the community in general, Mambo seems much more active, but Nucleus looks very active as well.  Especially with Nucleus XE.  Which is like a pre packaged setup with plugins already to go, etc.

  29. I’ve played with Mambo quite a bit and I think it’s pretty slick. My main reason for not using that is simply the fact that it lacks support for things such as trackback and pinging sites like weblogs.com. Drupal is more CMS than blog, but it does have modules that support those and other blogish features so that makes it more desirable.

    If I were intending to create more of a community site and less of a blog site then I’d give Mambo some serious consideration.

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