SixApart has responded to the user community’s criticisms by slightly restructuring their licensing terms and pricing. Based upon the new scheme, if I were to upgrade our current installation to 3.0, I would need to purchase the Movable Type 3.0 Personal Edition for $69.95. This is less than the $119.95 I would have had to pay for the previous “Volume License I”, but still too much in my opinion.
Movable Type is in a competitive marketplace. There are numerous weblog tools, some of which are arguably close to MT in terms of features, and many of which are nearing it in popularity. They have one thing in common, though. The most popular weblog tools are free. By adding this new pricing scheme, I believe Six Apart has effectively priced Movable Type out of the competition. Sure, perhaps they’re now appealing to a different crowd, who relies on the quality and support (or at least the perceived quality and support) that a paid commercial product ensures. But I think they’ve lost touch with their core following – knowledgeable people who have set up their own MT installations for themselves and a few of their friends.
So as it stands now, I have no plans to upgrade to Movable Type 3.0. I certainly cannot move to the Free Edition, as our site has one too many blogs and three too many authors. Since I really am satisifed with the current 2.661 version, and don’t really have any reason to upgrade at all, I also won’t be paying for the Personal Edition.
I just hope that Six Apart will provide security patches for older versions, when and if they are necessary. That would be the least they could do to maintain some respect.