Price hike, no more ticket support - enough signals from Invision

whitetigergrowl

Participant
Joined
Aug 11, 2006
Messages
60
Given the large number of features being added over the last couple of years, I can't say I'm surprised to see the price going up.

I used to be an Invision customer, but the company fell out of favour with me when they abolished the so-called "perpetual" license, it left a bad taste in my mouth.
That combined with the fact you can't download the software when your license expires is also a big negative for me.
Customers should be able to download the current version of the software when the license was still active, not exclude them completely.

Yes they have. HOWEVER as I mentioned before I wouldn't consider some of those new features best in class as they tend to still be rough around the edges, missing common things, and not as good as competitor or even 3rd party add ons of the same thing. I mean when a 3rd party is making add ons for your forum that are superior to what you offer in multiple ways, you have a problem. It actually highlights the shortcoming of that company created software of the same type.

It then creates a reliance on that third party that isn't good if they should stop development.

I have multiple problems with IPB over the past few years that I have mentioned here and their online forums. I mean for example $15 to change a domain name that no one is touching to change on their end. It's literally all software based. So what is the point of that charge that not VB or even Xenforo charge? It's a blatant money grab. I mean they could even still put a limit. But their current limit is greatly inhibitive and restrictive.

I guess they won't figure out some of these problems unless more people stop using them or their growth stagnates. At that point maybe they will re-visit some of these things and take them more seriously. But by then it may be too little too late. Not like they are considered the #1 forum software or #1 forum software used anyways. Did they learn nothing from the VB mess years ago?

And I definitely wouldn't be focusing on businesses or corporations either as they look for more economical and modern ways to communicate with other employees and people. That's putting all your eggs in one basket and really narrowing the playing field. It's short sighted. And if hobbyists move away from IPB, then if IPB down the line needs them back...good luck. And as more corporations and hobbyists move away from forums for more modern ways of communicating... you will have no fall back.

I really really hope IPB re-evaluates its long term strategy as well as refine their software.
 

Matt M

Director Development at Invision Community
Joined
Apr 28, 2005
Messages
408
Hi all,

Firstly, I really appreciate the passion and enthusiasm for Invision Community and the industry. I realise that taking the time to share your thoughts and opinions shows that you truly care. Your honest and candid posts are appreciated.

I'd like to make one last reply here; not to try and change minds, but just to show what's happening at Invision Community.

On Support
I read a lot of anxiety about "removing support unless we pay $650". I want to underline that we are not removing support and neither are we removing ticket support. We want to develop a support community led by our team. This is important to note. Forum support is not something we ignore, nor is it something that we ask our techs to do "when they can". We have developed systems and workflows to ensure that these support questions are answered. We can make a topic a ticket with a few clicks. We can add private follow-up notes to ensure we go back and check in, we also have an internal system to flag developers for help when needed. When you create a new support topic, we link to your customer account and ask which license you need help with, so our support team can see that information without having to ask or look it up. We are serious about making this a success.

Our community support is not run by unpaid volunteers and neither is it run by our developers when they have 5 minutes between writing features.

I see a lot of people speculating about how bad our support is now, but all you need to do is look for yourself today at our support area:

1634113294992.png
The green tick indicates that the problem has been resolved, and the team badge indicates that a member of our support team has made a reply into that topic. As you can see, no one is being ignored and most people are getting their issue solved within hours.

Our aim is to improve support. Why send an email into a blackhole and then wait 2-3 business days for a reply when you may get an answer from a fellow customer instantly (this has happened multiple times now) or a reply from our team the same day? By taking our support public we are being very transparent about the service we offer and it makes good sense for us to be very much on the ball. I would say that most have found the switch to be a positive move. We still move topics into tickets if needed.

On the past
We've been in business for 18 years. A lot has happened. The internet is unrecognisable now compared to 2003. We've had to make some brutally hard decisions and choices over the years. I know this has cost us some short-term goodwill but the alternative is to stagnate and become irrelevant like so many of our peers have over the years. We are fortunate to still be doing what we love. We've grown from 2 people working through the night to a team of close to 20 (and many of whom were in pre-school when we started). We have a vibrant start-up energy and in many ways we're a 20 year old overnight success.

On the future
If we have learned one thing from the past 20 years is that sitting still is not an option. It's not easy and it's not comfortable to continually adapt but that is what we are good at. We're not afraid to make bold decisions and keep innovating.

We started our business when Hotscripts.com was launched and having a 5 pepper rating was the goal to a world of apps and services instantly available without even having to know (or care!) about servers, DNS, SSL and all the things we love to geek out about.

A lot has changed and we've had to keep moving.

We want you all to come with us too.
 

Pete

Flavours of Forums Forever
Joined
Sep 9, 2013
Messages
2,165
I assumed the $15 charge was a deterrent to people either trying to use one licence for multiple projects and/or people who might try to resell the licence by selling their account which is against the TOS.

How often would a normal community change its URL? And if it is, presumably it’s getting a new domain anyway so you’re not talking $15 but $25+ which if you’re going to the effort of rebranding is probably cheap (since new logo/theme will often be in that too)
 

Matt M

Director Development at Invision Community
Joined
Apr 28, 2005
Messages
408
I assumed the $15 charge was a deterrent to people either trying to use one licence for multiple projects and/or people who might try to resell the licence by selling their account which is against the TOS.

How often would a normal community change its URL? And if it is, presumably it’s getting a new domain anyway so you’re not talking $15 but $25+ which if you’re going to the effort of rebranding is probably cheap (since new logo/theme will often be in that too)
As we've always done; if you have a genuine need to change your site's URL then use our contact us page and we'll waive the fee. It is indeed a deterrent to prevent one owner with multiple licenses shuffling URLs to prevent paying for renewals on all licenses. It's really much less of an issue than it was 5 or 6 years ago.
 

Tracy Perry

Opinionated asshat
Joined
May 25, 2013
Messages
5,044
I assumed the $15 charge was a deterrent to people either trying to use one licence for multiple projects and/or people who might try to resell the licence by selling their account which is against the TOS.

How often would a normal community change its URL? And if it is, presumably it’s getting a new domain anyway so you’re not talking $15 but $25+ which if you’re going to the effort of rebranding is probably cheap (since new logo/theme will often be in that too)
That's one thing I had no real issue with. I'm pretty sure if after 12-18 months I decided to change the domain name due to lack of traction, it would not have been that big of a deal with IPS and I seriously doubt that there would even be a charge.
I think that was, as said, to help prevent the selling of an "account' when the license could not be legitimately transferred and probably a few were instances of people setting up a site for a few months, it not getting traction and then them wanting to change to a new "topic" with a new domain... wash and rinse that activity several times.

Some may think I'm anti-IPS, but I'm far from that. As I've said, they have a decent script and I continue to use it on one of my sites (no it's not busy as I really run it for my fun than anything else). My issue is that some of their business decisions appear to fall under the classification of "pure dumbass".
 

feldon30

Fan
Joined
Jun 7, 2013
Messages
502
We want to develop a support community led by our team. This is important to note. Forum support is not something we ignore, nor is it something that we ask our techs to do "when they can". We have developed systems and workflows to ensure that these support questions are answered. We can make a topic a ticket with a few clicks. We can add private follow-up notes to ensure we go back and check in, we also have an internal system to flag developers for help when needed. When you create a new support topic, we link to your customer account and ask which license you need help with, so our support team can see that information without having to ask or look it up. We are serious about making this a success.

This is a completely new strategy then as IPB has thus far been sold as essentially turn-key software.

The vBulletin forums were legendary for user-to-user support and sharing of information, resources, answers, and programming tips where users would walk each other through imports, fixes, rebuilds, and processes as necessary to squeeze the most out of the software or fix catastrophes. In contrast, anyone with that level of knowledge on the IPB side is either a paid consultant or selling plugins/themes. There is no braintrust of users-helping-users in IPB--not for less than $100 an hour at least.

If you're going to transform the entire culture of the IPB community forums into a place of support, you've got your work cut out for you.
 

Matt M

Director Development at Invision Community
Joined
Apr 28, 2005
Messages
408
I was wondering when Matt was going to respond here.
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Kyrie

Habitué
Joined
Sep 2, 2009
Messages
1,018
I was ready to raise my pitch fork until I saw Matt M reply, lol.

I hope these prices are adding the value we know that Invision has to offer.

Total side note, my IRL name is Walter and this thread tripped me up.
 

Pete

Flavours of Forums Forever
Joined
Sep 9, 2013
Messages
2,165
Y’all should migrate to StoryBB, then you could trivially switch to different apparent accounts to post controversial opinions!
 
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