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Guest eko

Attitudes towards payware developers - what do you thin

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Hi allI've been following the babble on the Captain Sim forum, and it raises an issue which I've often wondered about. I'd really like to know what you all feel about it.Some (a lot) of simmers seem to believe that payware developers are somehow immune from all the normal laws and conventions relating to commerce.In the minds of certain people, it appears that it's perfectly OK for commercial software developers who specialise in aircraft to be rude to their customers, to ignore communications, to disregard promises made, to threaten customers with sanctions.... please tell me I'm not the only one here who thinks this is not acceptable?I hope someone else feels the same as me, otherwise there's a chance my friends and family might have been right about me all along.

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Guest joea

Damian, I'm with you. i haven't ordered the 727 from Captain Sim, nor do I intednt to.I do have their Aero L-39 and it is a nice bird. I don't think it's a big deal when a developer misses a deadline, well with the demands made by us as a community and the complexity of these add-ons it is not too surprising. What I can't condone is the attitude of treating customers who want refunds in the way Captain Sim seemed to be doing. Come one, it's only a game everyone needs to put that in perspective.

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I agree!The whole issue with the Cap'Sim group is their arrogance, lackof repect, and humiliating customers.http://ftp.avsim.com/cgi-bin/dcforum/dcboa...ewmode=threadedThey may produce great products, and I don't think the delayin the final product is the issue. The problem is that they'venow thrust on customers a special activation code, that'sbuggy, and requires customers to contact Cap'Sim whenever theyneed to move the product to a different PC.What happens when Cap'Sim ceases to exist? You'll essentiallynot be able to fly their product on any system other thanthe original PC.Crazy, just crazy!JerryG

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Guest B52Drivr

Just my observations:I too waited for the Capt. Sim 727 and had pre ordered it.I too was dissappointed when it did not come out on the 19th.I too sent in my code and downloaded the aircraft.I too found numerous bugs in the product, however I am willing to wait for the improved 'real release' to see if they are fixed.Deadlines come and go, and if they are not met, well, -- that is the real world. Capt.Sim missed his, but at least offered us something until they can get the complete package finished To me, well, its just not that big a deal.If a customer is NOT satisfied with that, he should request a refund and HE SHOULD GET IT! IF A PAYING CUSTOMER DOES NOT LIKE THE PRODUCT HE HAS OFFERED TO US ATTHIS POINT, HE SHOULD BE REFUNDED AND GO HIS MERRY WAY. CAPT SIM DID SET HIS OWN DEADLINE -- AND THAT IS WHAT HIS COMPANY MUST LIVE WITH. FAIR IS FAIR.HOWEVER:Instead of whinning and complaining, I am looking at this as an chance to help the developer 'improve' the final product. Very seldom do we ever get that chance -- to give our input to the mfgr on a product we will buy. Think about it for a moment. The Capt Sim forum is full of intelligent posts (we won't talk about the crying and knashing of teeth posts) saying this does that, and this is not correct and we're just trying to help you fix it. Now, having said that, and being that so many of us want to be 'real' airline pilots, and crew, we should perhaps think that part of being a 'real' pilot, and being trusted with many passengers and a companies multi million dollar toy required a wee bit of common sense, intelligence and patience. The patience part comes in when you have to sit at the ramp, or on a taxiway for God knows how long waiting for some development, like weather, or such . . .before you can go play with your toy. I know very few real life airline captains who scream, shout, say nasty things and throw temper tantrums because they have to hold on the ramp, or wait at the gate. They may not like it, but they keep their cool and deal with it -- why? Because that is the way it is! That is real life, and that is how you deal with real situations in real life. (if you hold a position of responsibility which human life falls into that catagory.)Perhaps we should all take a lesson from 'real life' and apply it to our 'As real as it gets' life. Just an observers thoughts.Best to allClayton T. DopkeMajor, USAF (retired)"Drac"B52Drivr@aol.com

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Guest

I appreciate the replies - thanks. Maybe it isn't just me after all... :-)And I wasn't aiming my remarks exclusively at Captain Sim. It seems there are a few companies who don't think everyday commercial principles apply to them. I'd mention them by name, but I'm scared they'd come round and burn my house down.There appears to be one big exception to this - Real Air Simulations, whose service appears to be really excellent (as it should be of course.)

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Guest DaveKDEN

Captain Sim isn't the only developer that's been afflicted with this problem. Unfortunately, even certain individuals from very reputable developers have problems with poor customer relations.Dave

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I did not pre-order the 727 but was watching and waiting for the final release. I think the whole situation could have been avoided by Captainsim simply coming out before the release date and telling everyone honestly that they would miss the date. Then offer anyone who preordered a refund if they want, which should be acceptible because no one would have received the product so piracy is not an issue. Unfortunatly they waited until the 11th hour and then made a rather confusing communication to the community. A better message send a little earlier could have avoided much of the problem. As for pre-orders of software, I never pre-order something unless the seller will not charge my credit card until the final product ships. This is how EB World does it's software pre-orders. That way if a release date slips, at least no money changed hands so that if the buyer wants to change his/her mind, then so be it. Just my humble opinion. I would hope that the rift between CaptainSim and the community can be mended by cooler heads. There are too few quality developers in this hobby and I would hate to lose one.

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Phoenix 1 - I would argue that not only are your customers important to your future as developers, they are absolutely critical!I also think your statement about poor customer relations being the fault of the customer is very revealing. I've worked in service industries in the past and we ALWAYS said it was the customer's fault (it usually was) but we knew that good business means the customer is always RIGHT.(FWIW I have found the service from your own particular company to be very good.)

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>There appears to be one big exception to this - Real Air >Simulations, whose service appears to be really excellent >(as it should be of course.) I agree. But other "good" guys in my opinion have been Flight1 and Dreamfleet. Neither shy away from controversy, never prescreen their forums, etc. If they get a stupid post they deal with it and never overdramatize it.Michael J.[link:hifi.avsim.net/activesky]http://hifi.avsim.net/activesky/images/wxrebeta.jpg

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GrahamThat`s right getting through the problems should be job one but it`s you as the developer that should getting through them as that is what we are paying you for.It amazes me how that is forgotten by both developers and simmers alike.I really feel sorry for the guys that are getting shafted by Captain Sim and feel that their attitude is inexcuseable.Oh and let`s not forget the victims of Wilco`s latest monster while we`re at it.My sympathies are with them as well.

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""Now, having said that, and being that so many of us want to be 'real' airline pilots, and crew, we should perhaps think that part of being a 'real' pilot, and being trusted with many passengers and a companies multi million dollar toy required a wee bit of common sense, intelligence and patience.""The last thing I'd want to be is an airline pilot. I agree with the "wee bit of common sense, intelligence and patience" comment. As far as payware goes, it'd behoove all those developers to clearly mark their products "AS IS", "WHERE IS". Course, it'd be best if they could demo the products before hand so we could make an informed purchase decision. But the problem there is with the "hackers" who'd simply break the codes.

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Yeah the issue isn't the delay at all, it's 100% lack of communication - they knew the 727 wasn't gonna be done and they didn't post any kind of notice until nearly the end of the day PST on the 19th. Then, compound that with all the confusion over activation and the beta release, and you've got a recipie for distaster, as we're seeing right now.I'm very impressed with the tech release - it's nowhere near being done, but the panel looks spectacular, as does the visual model, and the flight dynamics other than the already noted high alt speed problems are spot on. I can definitely tell this plane is gonna be winner when (I hope not "if" at this point) it's finished. I think the CS forum should probably be shut down at this point and reopened when the final 727 is released - it's causing an all out war between CS and their customers and CS definitely isn't puting all the time they could be into finishing the plane when they're on the forums sparing with people every 10 minutes...

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Guest Skedflyer

I think Capt. is just reacting to what has been thrown his way. Some ppl reacted very mature, and simply stated that they don't agree with the reg process and would like a refund. The others (and sad to say the Majority), reacted angrily from the get go and ppl started to post very negative and insulting posts. Yes I agree he should not have that policy, but it is his choose. People failed to realize that there is a real person there, DOING THIS FULL TIME

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Dennis - I think you make some excellent points. You're absolutely right that just because you're paying money, it doesn't give you the right to be abusive towards someone.And I repeat, I wasn't directing my initial comments towards Captain Sim exclusively.There just appears (to me at any rate) to be a feeling amongst some developers that they're somehow above normal business protocol, and I wondered who shared my opinion.

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I don't argue that there are some payware developers who have a bit of an attitude problem. Apparently, having a bad attitude is somewhat critical to being involved in this hobby in the first place! At least that's the impression I sometimes get from trawling the forums. Here's the flip side:Some simmers seem to believe that commercial add-on customers are somehow immune from all the normal conventions relating to interpersonal communications.In the minds of certain people, it appears that it's perfectly OK for customers of commercial products to be rude to the developers of those products, and to publicly flog them for the slightest infraction. Apparently, once you charge for a product, you give up all rights to any respect whatsoever, regardless of your past track record of service to the community. Witness the wrath unleashed on Lago for their recent Twotter debacle, even though they've had a banner year of releasing a record number of magnificent add-ons and are consistently responsive to their customer base. Look at Damian Clark, who has been the object of some scorn for deciding to release a payware version of his popular ActiveSky weather module, even though the guy put in a tremendous amount of his own time building five freeware versions which he donated to the community.It cuts both ways, people. Perhaps if some people were a trifle less shrill in their condemnation of any developer who dares to release a program with flaws (even if it's patched later), those developers might relax a little and not be so defensive. After all, it's a hobby people! Do yourselves a favor and stop getting so worked up over everything.

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I have been trying so hard to keep my patience, but I have just HAD IT! I am so fed up and it's NOT with CaptainSim. I usually try not to behave this way but let me give you individuals a piece of my mind...All of you who don't want CaptainSim's products - deserve not to have CaptainSim's products. The stuff that they are producing (yes, along with PSS, Pilot's, FSD, Flight1, and Lago - which are the only addons I have from as of yet) is of some of the highest quality I have seen. I can't tell you how much fun I have had flying the MIG-21, and it handlin UNLIKE any other Freebee out there. I really "feel" like I'm flying a old military jet (no, don't ask the question of whether or not I have ever flown a MIG. I haven't - have you?). The panel, vc and external model are also TOP quality. The 727, after seeing the first screenshots, looks to be the MOST IMPRESSIVE VC TO DATE, PERIOD!). Can any of you possibly imagine what must go into the deveolpment of such an aircraft? Can any of you imagine the fun and pleasure WE CUSTOMER'S are going to get out of flying this wonderful aircraft when it's completed?I have seen so much complaining given to a small team of developer's who are tired and working very hard for us. I want the plane too, and I am one of the user's who can't even get the activation code to work yet. But guess what - I have enough foresight to see that this plane is going to give me an enormous amount of pleasure. Happiness is so priceless to me! I'm going to die one day and I hope I filled my life with as much happiness as possible. It's developers like CaptainSim who have had the courage to try and create an addon that goes so far above and beyond the norm. Yes, they missed a deadline and have had numerous problems in their copyguard coding. Yes, I can't fly my 727 dev version yet, but I know I will be, and when I am, I will have forgotten all of this nonsense and complaining.I truly hope there are enough of you out there who can see what CaptainSim are doing, and not be blinded by this MOB-Mentality and complete lack of consideration for a small group of developer's that have gotten no sleep and had to put of with so much complaining it makes me sick.I am truly sorry for this post. I try very hard to keep my cool but I am so fed up with all of you who just want to complain as much as possible. Look what we are getting! I know I'm happy CaptainSim exists and develops the wonderful addons they do. Then "I" get to fly them and that makes me happy. Being happy has a very, very high value to me.Jim

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Guest DaveKDEN

> it appears that it's perfectly OK for customers of commercial products to be rude to the developers of those products, and to publicly flog them for the slightest infraction.On the flip side, it also appears to be perfectly OK (in their mind) for some individuals representing commercial developers to be completely rude to their customer base and fly off the handle at the slightest opinion or comment.Dave

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Now Now Damien :) I NEVER said it was the customers Fault.... What I meant was that poor customer relations can sometimes be percieved when, for example..... a customer ( Who is obviously right by definition :) ) has the opinion that a developer is not being helpful (when the customer is perhaps asking the impossible) :)silly example I know but the point is simply this.. Instead of making a poor situation worse, a developer COULD (SHOULD) do EVERYTHING POSSIBLE to make that customer happy, even if it means refunding the money and admitting defeat .. Am I wrong ?

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Yes, Dave, that opinion was the basis for this thread. I don't argue that some developers have been less than professional. I just wish that their customers would take the high ground and stop this incessant attack on them. I think that if we all simmered down a little, they would too. That doesn't seem like a lot to ask.

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I think part of the problem is that "Support" forums can actually create more problems than they solve. Whilst it is true that support forums can even be in effect free promotion for a developer, we have so far decided against having a forum.The reason: We make all efforts to address every query in person via e-mail, and so far, with very few exceptions, it works. The time taken on keeping a forum going is in our view taking valuable time away from actually personally serving our customers. In any case, our customers appreciate that personal service, and we will stick doggedly with a customer whatever the problem, until it is resolved.We are a small team and I think that helps us to keep focus on the job in hand and not get sidetracked. One thing we would NEVER consider is taking advance orders for anything. One of us could be run over by a bus and I would not want to risk attracting orders before we were certain our product worked, was finished, and viable.Having said that I sympathise with Captain Sim, whose products are great and they must have had enormous pressure to agree to advanced orders. It is very risky to announce a release before it is ready, and we won't release or announce anything until we are positive we can support our announcement.Best Regards,Rob Youngwww.realairsimulations.com

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Repeating what I said in a similar thread:All I want is value for my dollar. If you make a great chair at a good price, I'll buy it and sit in it.I don't care how you do it or if you are a kook in your spare time.

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Guest SoarPics

I believe some here are losing track of Damien's original slant. The question regards customer service... or lack thereof.If a developer knows they will be late meeting a previously announced release date, then they need to make the community aware of this. Failing to do so is POOR CUSTOMER RELATIONS.As a business owner, I know all too well what it's like to deal with whining and complaining customers. But that comes with the territory. Those types of customers are present in all areas of business. A business owner who fails to deal with such customers with dignity and respect is simply exhibiting POOR CUSTOMER RELATIONS. (My solution for dealing with this type of customer is to do everything I can to make them happy... without giving away the store... and then hope they go to my competition!!! Better them than me.)In this hobby there seems to be a lack of acceptable customer relations amongst many of the commercial developers. Simply put, there are a number of prima donnas. The strong exception is RealAir... as noted by others in this thread and elsewhere. Other commercial developers would do well to follow RealAir's example. The high level of quality in their products AND their strong customer relations doctrine will quickly have simmers running to them with money in hand. Money that won't be offered to the competition with outstanding quality but poor customer relations. It's a simple fact of life in the business world... customers should not have to put up with being treated badly.And that dignity issue works both ways... it does no good to whine and complain when a developer misses a release date. As Clayton said, give 'em a break! Allow them some time to release a good product to you. If they fail to communicate the delay to you, then let your money do the talking for you... take it elsewhere. That's a message any developer will understand... when their bills come due and there isn't enough revenue to pay them!!!With regard to Captain Sim's recent announcement about banning those customers who ask for a refund... it's always interesting to see someone shoot themselves in the foot! A perfect example of POOR CUSTOMER RELATIONS. I predict Captain Sim will in the future have plenty of free time on their hands.

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Guest DaveKDEN

>I just wish that their customers would take the high ground and stop this incessant attack on them.Very much agreed! I've seen equally abusive customers with unreasonable expectatins/unwarrented criticisms. As is many times the case, there's two sides to every story. The bottom line however is that customers don't deserve to be treated like chaff with the expectation that there's always another customer around the corner. Many a business has gone by the wayside because of that. Dave

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Guest Josve

I was for a while thinking of buying the 727.....but now NOT!!!With a policy calling people who want a refund BETRAYERS really doesn't suit me at all.Refunding when you're not satisfied with a product is a normal prosedure in the common world.And also saying if you wan't a refund you'll never are allowed to buy a product from us ANY MORE is waaay out of line.If this is the way Captain Sim are going to treat their Cusomers,they are digging their own grave!!Just my two cents......Johnny"I'LL BE BACK"[div align=center]http://www.avsim.com/hangar/fly/josve/zone.jpg ][/div

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