The CoverSutra Debate Continues

I love MacStories and just about everything that Federico Viticci writes, but I have to disagree with some aspects of this post defending Sophiestication and the CoverSutra debacle.

Firstly I agree with Federico - verbally abusing the developer is not necessary and is completely wrong.

Where I disagree is when Federico alludes that this situation was a by-product of the Mac App Store policies: “I believe Sophia is yet another victim of Apple’s policy when it comes to the Mac App Store, and she’s just being accused first.” The problem with CoverSutra was not the transition to the Mac App Store or it’s policies but is actually with the fact that Sophia (the developer of CoverSutra) decided to cut off her existing customers.

Sophia chose to move to the Mac App Store exclusively and to not maintain two builds. She fell victim to her own policy and not to Apple’s. Sure, she may have forgotten about the promise she made, but she should consider herself reminded.

I get the fact that as a small developer the overhead of maintaining two builds is not to be easily absorbed, but she made the choice to ditch one of those builds. Unfortunately she chose the one that her existing customers paid for her to use until she delivered on the free upgrade to version 3.0 that she promised.

I feel for Sophia, cause she has a big decision now:

  • Stick with the Mac App Store, alienate her existing customers and tarnish her reputation, in the hope that new customers through the Mac App Store can overcome the setbacks.

  • Revert to two builds - an overhead sure, but maybe less costly than the hit to her reputation.

Either of these options is going to cost her and her company to some extent. Personally, I think she should take the second option - the Internet community can be a cruel and unforgiving bunch.

One more thing - Federico wrote “I think this is a problem of self-entitlement with some users” - maybe it is, maybe it’s not. These users feel that they paid for free upgrades up to an including version 3.0. Is this what Sophia sold?1 If so, then surely it’s not self-entitlement for people to expect what they paid for.

  1. I didn’t buy CoverSutra so I don’t know how the free upgrades came about - were they advertised as such in the sales blurb, or was it an afterthought?