"I don't have much money so can I have your plugin for free?"

DSP, Plug-in and Host development discussion.
Fender19
KVRist
414 posts since 30 Aug, 2012

Post Tue Jan 21, 2020 3:34 pm

Every once in a while I receive email from a "starving artist" asking for a free copy of my plugins. I usually reply with an offer like, "if I provide a free copy can you help promote with a blog or video in return"? Usually we work something out and everyone is happy.

Today's reply was "No, I don't have time to do that".

Hmm. I don't want to be a d!ck but I can't give out free copies to anyone who asks - that would not be fair to everyone else who has paid for it - or to me who has spent hundreds of hours developing it.

How would you respond to this?

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SampleScience
KVRAF
3989 posts since 31 Oct, 2004 from Mtl, Canada

Re: "I don't have much money so can I have your plugin for free?"

Post Tue Jan 21, 2020 3:43 pm

I wouldn't waste my time answering the "No, I don't have time to do that". That being said, I find your idea of exchanging promotion for plugin good. I never thought about it and when I received this type of email I always ignored them.

BlueprintInc
KVRist
100 posts since 9 Apr, 2017

Re: "I don't have much money so can I have your plugin for free?"

Post Tue Jan 21, 2020 3:45 pm

Business and experience tought us to stay strong, so we don't give out anything to those guys even when they tell the most heartbreaking stories. We usually respond by telling them when a new special offer or chance to win a plugin for free is. Also we tell them there's the option for educational discounts. But I gotta say, when talking to other devs, we often see the same guys trying to get free stuff from everywhere, so usually scam anyways.

We also got offerings to do tutorials and we usually ask them to do one first with one of our free plugins. That way we can see how they approach it and with what quality and community response. If it work out well we might give them a free copy of another one. Suprisingly we often don't hear from them anymore after asking them :D

Robmobius
KVRAF
3301 posts since 10 Sep, 2010 from A shit hole (Ireland).

Re: "I don't have much money so can I have your plugin for free?"

Post Tue Jan 21, 2020 4:25 pm

Fender19 wrote:
Tue Jan 21, 2020 3:34 pm
How would you respond to this?
Don't waste your time... Nobody works for free unless it's for a charity, etc.

They don't even deserve a response. Sure, how would you know if they were even telling the truth? They are probably trying to get free plugs form a bazillion other devs as well.
We 'the leaders' bring you the ultimate paradigm shift. Dramatization: No paradigms were actually shifted in the making of this statement. Furthermore, any reference to paradigms is for entertainment purposes only.

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Boone777
KVRian
825 posts since 8 Aug, 2011

Re: "I don't have much money so can I have your plugin for free?"

Post Tue Jan 21, 2020 4:57 pm

There is already so much good free stuff, it's already killing the market IMO.
Anybody that does a little research has no excuse not to make music with decent results for free.

The reason why they did'nt find those plugins is most likely for the same reason they don't have any money and try sucking on other people's work: not making any efforts.
Win 7, 64Bit, 16 Gig RAM, Intel i7 Quad 3.9, Reaper 5.965, Steinberg MR816x

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vortico
KVRist
311 posts since 19 Jul, 2008

Re: "I don't have much money so can I have your plugin for free?"

Post Wed Jan 22, 2020 12:27 am

Pirates do this to obtain anonymous license keys that they can release on warez sites so they don't have to worry about cracking the binary. Common tactic. Don't fall for it. Ignore it and go on. A similar scam is "I'm a teacher at <random college>. Can I have a free license for my student(s)?"
Last edited by vortico on Thu Jan 23, 2020 2:20 am, edited 1 time in total.
VCV Rack: virtual Eurorack DAW

quikquak
KVRian
663 posts since 6 Aug, 2005 from England

Re: "I don't have much money so can I have your plugin for free?"

Post Wed Jan 22, 2020 2:30 am

I ask for proof of student/teacher ID, before even handing out discounts. To be honest, you never know who's going to be distributing your keys for free. Some people refuse to acknowledge they live in a capitalist society. :)
You could lock-down your keys to a single machine, or an internet location, but that of course is seen as going 'too far' in the name of protection.
*edit*... and of course it's ''fun' to hack the protection out of the code from these 'evil corporations.' :hihi:

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Tj Shredder
KVRAF
3828 posts since 6 Jan, 2017 from Outer Space

Re: "I don't have much money so can I have your plugin for free?"

Post Sun Jan 26, 2020 12:20 am

Fender19 wrote:
Tue Jan 21, 2020 3:34 pm
Every once in a while I receive email from a "starving artist" asking for a free copy of my plugins. I usually reply with an offer like, "if I provide a free copy can you help promote with a blog or video in return"? Usually we work something out and everyone is happy.

Today's reply was "No, I don't have time to do that".

How would you respond to this?
I would say:
“If you don’t have time, that is a proof that you are not a starving artist!”
On the other hand, it should be easy to find out if that person is an artist at all... But its most likely a waste of time to do that sort of research unless you are curious...
Out of my own experience of being a starving artist, I can tell, if its important enough I will either find the money or if the product is in the high price area look out for sales or at least would make an offer I could afford.
If someone beggars for a free version this is already suspicious... Most will not get their computers for free either, unless its an 10 years old garbage ancient piece which you would better run with free software anyway...

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khanyz
KVRAF
1616 posts since 16 Jul, 2004 from Deepest Yorkshire

Re: "I don't have much money so can I have your plugin for free?"

Post Sun Jan 26, 2020 1:14 am

I’ve never been a particularly starving artist, but I do have a particular set of skills :roll: , namely I write a mean manual, can debug down to machine code/file format/binary data and am a pretty good graphic artist.

If I can help a dev (particularly a newbie), in exchange for a plugin then I’m not shy about offering. I’ve done this several times and sometimes get nothing, a polite no and on rare occasion got an FU back, which is especially stupid, when I mention my previous work. When the dev has said yes, they’ve been happy with the results.

So I wouldn’t dismiss these requests entirely, but have a very high bar for accepting something in return.

Running competitions, such as mix ones with free/limited versions, is a good way to appease the rest IMO and get coverage.

And to the skill-challenged starving artists who still want to make such a request, try asking to organise a group buy. You can get a freebie for doing it (once all the commitments have been honoured) and the dev gets increased sales and customer base.
I miss MindPrint. My TRIO needs a big brother.

soundmodel
KVRian
699 posts since 28 May, 2010 from Finland

Re: "I don't have much money so can I have your plugin for free?"

Post Sun Jan 26, 2020 3:37 am

How about setting a "percentage of copies that I can afford to give away for free" and then just giving out the free ones without any "requirance"?

Of course you would not reveal that you have such "stash", in order to avoid people coming ask because they know that "this guy will give for free, because he has that stash".

But this is, so that you don't have to "require" something in exchange.

If your plug-in sells for an amount then one could probably be able to give away 5-20% of the profit.

One could also perhaps do "draws"/lottery on these free tickets, so that it's fair towards every participant and not just those that argue it through.

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vurt
addled muppet weed
59085 posts since 26 Jan, 2003 from through the looking glass

Re: "I don't have much money so can I have your plugin for free?"

Post Sun Jan 26, 2020 6:38 am

ive been a starving artist (literally, people where dropping food parcels in)(before you say lazy get a job, this is post disability) and while i had a few bits of equipment from when i was earning, there where newer bits i wanted.

i was lucky somehow (i do not know why, honestly) some devs and hw manufacturers, liked what i was doing (dont ask me) and would offer bits.
ive never approached a business for myself. i have for charity drives but usually companies i either have a relationship with or that i already own products by and am impressed with 8)

artists do art, if theyre lucky, it gets noticed by someone who can help :shrug:

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StudioDave
KVRian
1044 posts since 23 Jun, 2007 from Findlay OH USA

Re: "I don't have much money so can I have your plugin for free?"

Post Sun Jan 26, 2020 7:25 am

Boone777 wrote:
Tue Jan 21, 2020 4:57 pm
...
Anybody that does a little research has no excuse not to make music with decent results for free.
...
This.

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gentleclockdivider
KVRAF
2427 posts since 22 Mar, 2009 from gent

Re: "I don't have much money so can I have your plugin for free?"

Post Sun Jan 26, 2020 9:11 am

Starving artists , c'mon ...are you talking about You tube influencers ?
Eff.. them !
What prevents them from seeking a second job ?
Spoonfed millenial generation :party:
Eyeball exchanging
Soul calibrating ..frequencies

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