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a general question /market

edited November 2006 in Vanilla 1.0 Help
a friend of mine coded a few extensions/plugins for a bunch of forums (vanilla / IPB / phpbb / vb)

just to get a feeling for the market.

how much would you pay max. for an extensionpack which includes folowing features:

realtime ajax webmessenger with a full forum integration (popup)
guestbook in every userprofile (subcategory)
nickpage in every userprofile (subcategory)
gift-system with an included admininterface ( you can earn coins per posting and buy for those coins gifts for others which are displayed in a subcategory)

everything in all with a fully featured database integration.


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    vanilla is great because of the active community. if anyone deserves money here it's mark.
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    sure, there are also more people in this world .. they are all deserving money but this was not my question
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    clearer answer to your question:

    I'm not in favor of 'for-pay' add-ons as I feel it goes against the spirit of the open source community.
    I do not mind 'donation-ware' allowing people with money to donate where they see fit.

    The particular add-ons you mentioned are not very important to me, so ($1-10max per add-on)
    I'd only pay more for add-ons that are custom-created to my specs and for my use only.

    Finally, before I did pay you or anyone else a $, I'd first pay $100 to Mark.

    Speaking of which:
    #1 Mark, is there a policy on for-pay add-on development and the mention/promotion thereof in these forums?
    #2 Is there a donation button anywhere (for you)?
    #3 Could a donation button mechanism be added to the add-ons directory?
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    seems like you have a bad day or such ,

    all i know now so far is that you love mark and you are a friend of opensource software... cool beans.

    and just for you as a sidenote... i offer no software/code here, and additionally there is also _no_ link in my posting for such a salery , so cool down sparky.
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    Paid extensions can work but I prefer it to be a one off cost type thing. Somebody will create the extension but wants paying for their time, they set up a link to donate some money and when it's at a certain level, they'll make the extension and release it for everyone to use. I'm not a fan of people making the extension and then charging each person who wants it. Especially for open source software like Vanilla. That's just my view though. People are free to do as they like though :)
    Please don't see this as a post having a go. I'm just trying to explain my stance, and also why I haven't stated a cost.
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    @fery, no bad day, you ask for my position, I answered in detail

    Added questions re:rules because they seemed relevant and I do not know the answers.

    Don't get me wrong. I do not mind that people get paid for their work, but contributing to
    the community helps it grow. I've seen others collapse over money-issues, so I'd hope
    this never becomes an issue here... (yeah, yeah money is the root of all evil & fights :-))
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    edited November 2006
    yes we have allready talked about sharing files through donations and we try to find out now what the market say (market is also YOU), in the end only the gift script has arround 500 lines of individual code and possible support costs a lot of time.

    vanilla as forum is a basic thing on what you can build up .. so the best thing to build up a community with a lot of contributors, but an end-product like a plugin or an extension, (and i dont talk about vanilla i talk about specific scripts) are not a solid enough in my eyes to build up a contributor-circle with this little could-you-donate-please-"effect"...

    we discussed it for hours, and he said, anybody else can code it if he can afford arround more than 100 hours of scripting and serval hours of compatibility testing , and i think he is right .. but at least we have no expierience with donations so far.. we would love to contribute all the work to forums but on the other side so many lines of code makes it hard " to give it away like nothing"... and we are not talking about to code a symple default.php

    other than that we nerver talked about hundreds of dollars .. more 10$ or 15$ (tom was very expensive with up to 10$ each :-D ) and btw for all 4 explained things there , not for the plugins (let me call them plugins) more for the future-update/upgrade work and the support.

    but as i allready said it could be that we never publish those scripts for vanilla and if, definitely not through vanilla with those nice and tricky posts ... it's just a "discussion" to get some thoughts and opinions... thats all
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    To answer TomTester's questions: 1. No official policy, which has its pros and cons 2. 3. Neat idea... kind of like my buy a drink, add-on which will eventually incorporate wishlists and gift registrys (which offer non-monentary compensation for a coder's work.)
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    @fery zero. but these might me some nice things for your specific site. ie users will spend more time on your site & you are able to finance these changes with ad-dollars or sms-s.
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    Here's my 2¢...

    I'm not in favor of a paid extension, in general.


    I do feel people should be rewarded for their work. As a developer, I'm all for it.

    What I don't feel is right, using this as an example, Mark has written one extensive and thorough piece of software for which he does not require any monetary payment. Yet, someone wants to come in and use his work as a foundation for a "profiting" venture.

    Where's the logic in that? There isn't any. It isn't different than someone using vanilla for a paid web development project, and making a profit from it.

    Here's where I would be for a paid extension.

    The extension developer works with the main program developer, Mark, and puts together a plan for contributing "x" amount of proceeds back to the original project.


    An extension is sold for $5.

    For every extension sold, $2 - $2.50 would be a fair split, in my opinion.


    Simple. You wouldn't be able to turn a profit without the main software.

    As another example, if a developer is going to charge a client $500 for their time in theming and integrating vanilla with their site (note, not charging for vanilla itself), then they should also contribute back a donation to vanilla.

    Of course, the license doesn't require it. The GPL allows for someone to charge for their time to install, modify, theme, etc.

    However, while not required, it's the right thing to do.

    Although, under the GPL, any additions or modifications are required to be released under the same license and terms of the original software. How that affects a "paid" extension, I don't know. I'm not a lawyer.

    Me personally, I don't usually "pay" for additional add-on's (for any software) except in extreme circumstances. For that to happen, they had better be damn good, impressive, and add something that a user "just can't live without".

    For the above items you've listed, they aren't anything special.

    Of the extensions currently available for vanilla, a good example of something incredibly useful is the page manager extension. Not that I'm saying it should be paid, I'm just giving an example of how useful it is.

    If that extension were a 10 on a 1-10 scale, and an example of the level an extension should be before even considering asking for a payment, your listings (in my opinion) would be a 3. A 4 at best.

    It's not against someone's effort, mind you. Vanilla has many excellent extensions, and many excellent contributors. However, in a situation like this where the main software comes without financial cost, it's extensions/mods/add-on's should be the same in most circumstances.
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    I don't think you can sell a vanilla addon. If you release an addon it should be under GPL. He might be able to sell his script and release a vanilla hook for the script for free.
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    i dont think he like to sell "vanilla addons" , he sell his scripts and you can use it also for vanilla if you need, that might be a big difference.

    the whole idea was to have high quality coded plugins for a bunch of forum types with general support and upgrade abilities, not for the little buddy with his vanilla forum for his friends .. more for professional endusers , especially more than 50% of the actual extensions are in conflict with other extensions... and the most topics here are about to get bugfixes or to get informations about how to fix this and that.

    im not so sure about the fact that a pro user wants to wait "sometimes" for days until he get his bugfixes for his neccessary extension...or even not.

    im really wondering about the fact what thunder said. probably i explained it wrong.. the gift system is a complete inline-shopsolution like on where you can share/sell/and buy items in different sublevels (stores).

    but at least i'm really wondering about the "wont pay for anything mentality " ... so how can you expect allways fresh quality then?

    other than that and once again as reminder , this is just a general discussion,and not an "i would like to sell something" - topic
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    MarkMark Vanilla Staff
    edited November 2006
    While I do appreciate everyone's support, I feel I should chime in here... For the record, if people want to make extensions for money, I have no problem with that. I look at it this way: I didn't create PHP, but I use it to build applications from which I make money. Likewise, add-on authors for Vanilla didn't create Vanilla, but that doesn't mean their work on add-ons is inconsequential. The add-on is theirs and if they want to charge for it and people want to pay, I say "Go for it". After all, more extensions for Vanilla means more exposure for Vanilla - which is really my goal for the time being.
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    i think also that a little "quality for some bucks" philosophy would make better extensions.

    i also think there should be a kind of "free extensions" section and a "premium extensions" section ... alike.

    both worlds would get what they want ... on one side; extensions for free and probably better extensions for not much.

    there should be also a kind of a roadmap for "what kind of extension is worth to be an paid extension or not" ... this would be a quality booster for vanilla ... and "everybody" takes guaranteed a profit out of it.. at least the whole vanilla project.

    ... just as an idea
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    One of the better parts of Vanilla is that it is completely free. That way it's only built on people's urge to contribute back and make the product better.
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    vanilla for money? where was that mentioned?
This discussion has been closed.