Extended Sale! With a Price Hike Too!!

Well, Internet Brands announced an extended sale. They might as well call it a brand new sale given the fact that new vBulletin customers have to pay $160.00 instead of $130.00. I wonder who would notice.

Here’s my two cents. It’s my opinion they are  loosing customers and fast. To attract new ones or existing ones, they’re extending the sale. Let us not forget the bonus benefits of burying all the negative articles against them in the last few days. That’s most definitely an added bonus!

But like I said, who noticed the price went up?

During this extension period, the price of the Publishing Suite will be $160 for existing vBulletin customers with active licenses, a discount of more than 40 percent off of the regular price of the product. New customers can purchase the Suite for the discounted price of $235 during this period.
Source: Marketwire

So once again, being an original vBulletin customers only gets you screwed over more. Plus we’re now paying $160.00, the cost of the original vBulletin license. How poetic.

Paying the Brick Wall to think

Meet the new face of Internet Brands. The level of intelligence and negotiating with them is similar to talking to a brick wall in my opinion. Unyielding and refusing to move or budge. Refusing to compromise or hammer out an agreement
Meet the new face of Internet Brands. The level of intelligence and attempts to negotiate with them is similar to talking to a brick wall in my opinion. Unyielding and refusing to move or budge. Refusing to compromise or hammer out an agreement. Image Courtesy of Wikipedia.

Just a small reminder for everyone today’s the deadline for the license. While all this Internet Brands flames keep burning, at least remind yourself that the upgrade deal still closes today.

But let me say for the record, we’re getting screwed. We are being forced to buy new licenses.

Where I stand, this is how I feel how Internet Brands speaks to me as a customer:

All those updates we were promised for blog. Well, they’re worthless We’ve changed our mind. No more updates, unless you buy a vBulletin 4 Suite License

Your owned licenses? We don’t care about security or updates. No more updates after our license download period expires. No more updates, unless at minimum you buy a vBulletin 4 Forum license. But we think the Suite license is better.

Project Tools? You bought it? Well, guess you’re screwed now. It’s being given away for free. So look at it this way, you’re getting added value for your license!

So for those of us who actually are worried about security are being forced to shell out $130.00. For all us older license holders, stop and think a moment. Think how much in reality we’re really spending. We’re spending far more than we should. If Internet Brands truly wanted us as customers, they’d port our vBulletin 4 licenses at minimum for free to vBulletin 4 licenses, plus give us one year for free. Not make us pay our way into license changes.

We paid our $160.00 owned license. We paid our $180.00 license. We want our promise of paying for updates. We want our access to vBulletin.org. Why are you making us pay 72% of our original license cost? Or 82%? Is it because you want more money Internet Brands?


Oh it’s a suite license? Well then, let me remind me you too that we’re paying at least $290.00. Some are even paying $310.00. That’s more than the $235.00 price tag listed on vBulletin.com.

You say it’s a Pre-Sale Price and that price will go away today?

HELLO!? Do you hear yourself talking? Even after the pre-sale, the price tag goes up to 285.00. Furthermore you’re making the former vBulletin license holders pay even MORE after the presale, to the tune of $250.00 more. TWO HUNDRED AND FIFTY DOLLARS MORE. So what happened to the $160.00 I paid? Or $180.00?

It’s discounted from $285.00 regular price tag?

I’m just sure customers loved knowing they saved $35.00 to convert their original license over and that they know their licenses are worth pennies.

Internet Brands only cares for you…when you have your wallet in hand.

So as I go off now to swipe my VISA card tonight to pay for the poor, stupid excuse of a license update tonight with Internet Brands, I’ll be doing it as one pissed off customer, for being forced to pay for something I shouldn’t, and at the same time, mourning, knowing that my beloved software, my beloved vBulletin, has been raped.

P.S. Don’t forget our support contract changes too! I was reminded the other day when visiting the vBulletin.com Forums. It goes away too. We have to pay a wonderful annual fee for ticket support. But support via the forums are free! That’s assuming if you’re able to access the forums because you’ve been banned.

More Numbers: Press: 2, History Books +1, Internet Brands: 0

There’s one thing you could appreciate when reading business journals, magazines, and text books: they show you three outcomes, the right way, the wrong way, and the ugly. And boy, it’s starting to get ugly, and it’s not only coming from customers, but from observers outside in the business world.

Internet Brands officially today became a case study on how not to do things. The question now is “How will history look back at Internet Brands?” Will they be looked as a company who made resolutions and gestures to resolve matters with their customer base? Or will they end up as dust in the wind, shunned, and labeled as pariahs?

But do read the case study.

Fair Use Excerpt:

Software licensing can be a tough business. But if you’re able to build a great product and acquire customers, it can be a rewarding business. The founders of Jelsoft, the company behind the popular vBulletin message board software, know that first hand.

Having built arguably the best message board software out there, they sold Jelsoft to Internet Brands in 2007 for an undisclosed amount. And two years later, Internet Brands is facing a violent customer revolt over a new product and new licensing terms.

Bite the hand that feeds you Internet Brands, and that body who controls the hand will fight back, tooth and nail.

Casualty Count

I’ve been watching from the sidelines as the Internet Brands PR machine have been spinning and spinning everything possible. We saw the launch of vBulletin 4.0 Alpha.. I mean Beta (heck, it feels like an early Alpha) on vBulletin.com.

But between last week’s announcement, and this week, I wanted to know what have you decided as a license holder. I’ve seen it all on the last few weeks, but Internet Brands spins it that they’re achieving record sales. Yet the question I want to ask to everyone is Who what have you honestly decided? Stay? Moved to IPB? MyBB maybe? Or another solution?

Let’s try to quantify the number of who has actually decided to stay or move on from Internet Brands and vBulletin. Leave a comment and let the world know whether you decided to stay or not, and why.

You can say anything you want…only if you say what we want to hear

CensorshipDid you read this? A new policy on forum moderation. We’re being censored. We’re being silenced.

Quote:

As vBulletin has grown over the years we have often allowed posts on our forums which frankly are not constructive and which other companies would not allow on their sites. We have done this in the belief that most people can be reasonable and conduct themselves maturely and constructively. We still believe that most people act this way.

However it is clear that this policy has only opened the door for types of conduct and comments that are simply over the top and not acceptable. This is going to change as of now.

Please be aware that we will no longer allow posts with non-constructive rants, inflammatory language and trolling on our forums. We are aware that some people are used to being allowed to get away with such things. But beginning now that will no longer be the case. Such posts represent a distorted picture to current and potential customers and while we would like to be able to trust people to act maturely, events have proven that is simply not possible. We will, of course, continue to respond to real questions.

To the vast majority of our customers that have supported us over the years and that have responded to the vB4 Pre-sales event positively with their record orders, we say thank you and will do everything in our power to reward your faith and vote of confidence with exciting new things for the future.

If you didn’t catch this particular portion, well I’ll shine a bit of light on it.

Such posts represent a distorted picture to current and potential customers and while we would like to be able to trust people to act maturely, events have proven that is simply not possible.

It pretty much allows Internet Brands to deem any post as distorted and delete it.  So much for the ability to post constructive feedback.

Breach of Contract? Internet Brands might have violated one

First, a disclaimer: I’m not a lawyer, and I will not pretend to be one, so please consult one to verify my opinion. I’m merely voicing a legal opinion based on my understanding of law.

Second, I’m tired of reading on vBulletin.com from Team Members and Internet Brands that they have not violated the license agreement. They are correct that they have not violated the licensing agreement. However, our vBulletin license is governed not simply by a license agreement; it is also governed by contract law. We as license holders entered into a contract agreement with Jelsoft (now Internet Brands) when we purchased a vBulletin License and that contract is still very much enforceable.

Let me explain further:

West’s Business Law Tenth Edition defines a contract as ” ‘a promise or a set of promises for the breach of which the law gives a remedy, or the performance of which the law in some way recognizes as duty.’ Put simply, a contract is a legally binding agreement between two or more parties who agree to perform or to refrain from performing some act now or in the future.”

Jelsoft promised to sell us a license for vBulletin. Jelsoft ALSO promised a set price for renewal of vBulletin. The promise at the purchase of my license was $30.00, however I also agreed to a price increase of $40.00 before sixty days or $60.00 after sixty days on April 29, 2008. This in essence is part of an ACTIVE contractual agreement. The contractual agreement (implied and expressed during the pre-sales process) states that after one year, we are entitles to another year of downloads should we pay a certain said rate, thus the price being forty United States Dollars ($40.00) before sixty (60) days or sixty United States Dollars ($60.00) after sixty (60) days.

With the acquistion of Jelsoft, Internet Brands assumes fidicuary responsibility and therefore our contract agreement is with them. However, with the introduction of vBulletin 4, they’re trying to force us to buy a new license and into a new contract. Here’s the problem: They’re breaking our original contract (promise) to allow us to renew at the 40.00/60.00 rate. They’re forcing us to accept a new contract and new license agreement. The problem is they can’t make us. They can’t force us into a new contract. As of right now, they’re in breach of a contract by not allowing us to renew at our previous promised rate. We have to enter into a new contract at our choosing.

I think it’s time we take a hard look at what Internet Brands is saying. True they have not violated the license agreement, but that’s only partially the truth. We still have an ACTIVE contract with them. Until we accept the terms of a new contract, we’re still bound by the old contract, just as Internet Brands is bound by the old contract.

Where’s the proof? See http://www.vbulletin.com/forum/showthread.php?t=268714. It’s written out. It’s expressed. It’s considered part of a contract. I encourage everyone to print out a copy before that thread mysteriously “disappears”.

Don’t let Internet Brands confuse you. Don’t let Internet Brands change the terms of YOUR contract. We as license holders still contractually bound and it’s time we remind them to uphold their end of the contract.

Beyond Our Voices

Internet Brands operates communities for anyone to speak. But more importantly, are they truly listening to their customers?
Internet Brands operates communities for anyone to speak. But more importantly, are they truly listening to their customers and what they are saying?

I’m merely one of many voices out there who is not happy with Internet Brands (NASDAQ: INET). In my eyes, Internet Brands has destroyed a flagship product. Internet Brands has killed the goose that layed the golden eggs. Internet Brands has completely demoralized a community based on honesty, truthfulness, integrity and openness by silencing those who appear to be the most vocal against Internet Brands, Jelsoft and vBulletin.

The message from Internet Brands, in my opinion, is clear as crystal: “If license holders do not like the changes, the changes will be forced upon license holders whether license holders like it or not. If we resist, Internet Brands will split license holders up so they feel alone and isolated. Divide and Conquer”

I think it’s time we put a stop to this. We need to shout together with one common message and at the same time. If one of us shouts, Internet Brands will not hear us. If we shout together as a chorus, they will hear us whether they want to or not.

Banning customers is not solving the problem; it’s only compounding the problem. Rather than spending time banning customers, Internet Brands should spend the time getting to the root of the problems and concerns, and address them one by one. If they finally address the core concerns and problems, it will help license holders, and themselves.

It’s time Internet Brands face customers instead of hiding in the shadows. It’s time they have they man up and turn to license holders for help. It’s evident they have no idea what they are doing, and they’re alienating, scaring, and panicing customers. Here’s a free bit of advice from a consultant: Internet Brands: WHEN IN DOUBT, ASK THE CUSTOMER. GET FEEDBACK. DON’T EVER GUESS.

I am one of the many co-founders behind this site, but we as Founders realize we’re only a small voice in a sea of many voices. In the last few hours, I’ve seen high praise for vBulletin. I’ve seen criticism. I’ve also seen people leave.

I want to give all sides an opportunity to share their voice here. My voice is but one voice, but YOUR voice is important. Tweet us your interest on Twitter.

Don’t let Internet Brands silence you. If they can’t take the heat, they should not have lit the fire.

IB would like to Remind You “Nothing is Ever Free”

I was driving down the street and I watched some 1st and 2nd graders jump up and down, and skip across the crosswalk as they’re escorted by their parents to go home from school. Cute little kids I thought. It reminds me of the old concepts you learn, like FREE Play. But then it dawned on me. The old adage applies. Nothing is ever free.
After picking up some milk from my market and I started pondering while waiting at the checkout line: Is vBulletin 4 Series Truly free? My conclusion: NOPE. NADA. ZIP. ZILCH. It’s not free.
This is how it works. Your terms of your old legacy license will still be carried forward. It will be honored (oh joy….). But to qualify for future updates, you’ll need to purchase a vBulletin 4 license.
vBulletin 3 Translation: That means even if we want our old vBulletin 3 updates, regardless if its major, or minor (and maybe the occasional security patch that’s too big for a plugin or file), we’re going to have to pay that dreaded price… of $175.00
vBulletin 4 Translation: If you want to keep on running vBulletin 4 after your legacy license expires and get the latest updates, you need to pay $175.00
So exactly how is that free? That’s my question. Oh and let’s not forget that wonderful $80.00 support fee they’re now wanting from us so we can talk privately over support tickets.
So let’s just Split $175.00 over 40.00 or 60.00 respectively:
40.00 renewal at 175.00 rate: Between 4-5 Years to recoup costs
60.00 renewal at 175.00 rate: Between 2-3 Years to recoup costs
Anyone want that $80.00 price tag slapped in there?
40.00 renewal at 255.00 rate: Between 6-7 Years to recoup costs
60.00 renewal at 255.00 rate: Between 4-5 Years to recoup costs
I however, think the most sad thing is the misinformation customers have bought into and are now spreading. Customers have drank the punch or the IB flavored Kool-Aid. They’re wearing the new IB Rose Coloured Glasses. They’ve been conned and scammed to believe that they’re truely getting vBulletin 4 for free.
A couple of excerpts from the pre-sales forum today:
“It *is* free to current license holders. Or will be when it comes out.”
“I looked in my members area and I have a current license and it said my upgrade is FREE! to the 4.0”
Internet Brand claims the vBulletin 4.0 Upgrade is FREE, but is it truly free? Think again.
Internet Brand claims the vBulletin 4.0 Upgrade is FREE, but is it truly free? Think again.

I was driving down the street and I watched some 1st and 2nd graders jump up and down, and skip across the crosswalk as they’re escorted by their parents to go home from school. Cute little kids I thought. It reminds me of the old concepts you learn, like FREE Play. But then it dawned on me. The old adage applies. Nothing is ever free.

After picking up some milk from my market and I started pondering while waiting at the checkout line: Is vBulletin 4 Series Truly free? My conclusion: NOPE. NADA. ZIP. ZILCH. It’s not free.

This is how it works. Your terms of your old legacy license will still be carried forward. It will be honored (oh joy….). But to qualify for future updates, you’ll need to purchase a vBulletin 4 license so you can get your updates.

vBulletin 3 Translation: That means even if we want our old vBulletin 3 updates, regardless if its major, or minor (and maybe the occasional security patch that’s too big for a plugin or file), we’re going to have to pay that dreaded price… of $175.00

vBulletin 4 Translation: If you want to keep on getting vBulletin 4 updates after your legacy license expires, you need to pay $175.00

So exactly how is that free? That’s my question. Oh and let’s not forget that wonderful $80.00 support fee they’re now wanting from us so we can talk privately over support tickets.

So let’s just Split $175.00 over 40.00 or 60.00 respectively:

40.00 renewal at 175.00 rate: Between 4-5 Years to recoup costs

60.00 renewal at 175.00 rate: Between 2-3 Years to recoup costs

Anyone want that $80.00 price tag slapped in there?

40.00 renewal at 255.00 rate: Between 6-7 Years to recoup costs

60.00 renewal at 255.00 rate: Between 4-5 Years to recoup costs

I however, think the most sad thing is the misinformation customers have bought into and are now spreading. Customers have drank the punch or the IB flavored Kool-Aid. They’re wearing the new IB Rose Coloured Glasses. They’ve been conned and scammed to believe that they’re truely getting vBulletin 4 for free.

A couple of excerpts from the pre-sales forum today:

“It *is* free to current license holders. Or will be when it comes out.”

“I looked in my members area and I have a current license and it said my upgrade is FREE! to the 4.0”

Folks, WAKE UP. We’re being scammed. They’re trying to lessen the hurt buy sugar coating everything. The reality is we’re still going to have to buy a vBulletin 4 License even if we want vBulletin 3 updates. So much for free right?

vBulletin 4 Pricing Scheme is a Scheme!

We’re not just license holders; we’re also stakeholders as well. We many not own shares in Internet Brands, but we certain play an important role. But let’s just look at license pricing here. It might be difficult for non-vBulletin license holders to understand, but let me speak from a business perspective and maybe that will shine some light.
Let’s establish some facts and simplify some of the logic.
When vBulletin came out, there were two licenses: Leased and Owned
Leased license: $85.00
A leased license, as it suggested, allowed users to utilize a vBulletin license for one year. Afterwards, it need to be renewed. This was an annual process
Owned License: $160.00
A owned license, as it suggested, deemed a license holder a lifetime owner for vBulletin. After a one year period, any version updates, regardless major or minor, required a $30.00 fee to regain another year’s access to downloads.
On April 29th, 2008, a new pricing scheme was implemented.
Leased Licenses: $100.00
Owned Licenses: $180.00, with a year’s download access costing $40.00 before 60 days after a license expired, or $60.00 after.
On October 13, 2009, another new pricing scheme was implemented.
Leased Licenses: Discontinued
Owned Licenses (Forum Only):
Presale : $175.00
Regular: $195.00
Support Fees for One Year: $80.00
Owned Licenses (Suite):
Presale Upgrade from Older License (Active): $130.00
Presale Upgrade from Older License (Inactive, 12 or Less Months): $190.00
Presale Upgrade from Older License (Inactive, 12 Plus Months): $210.00
Regular Price Upgrade from Older License: $250.00
Presale New License: $235.00
Regular New License Price: $285.00
Did your head spin at the last set of prices? Mine did. So let me attempt to clarify in the words of Ms. Carrie Anderson:
Let’s say you have an owned license. Under the old scheme, you received free upgrades for one year with your license purchase, at which point you either renewed or did not renew. If you renewed, you received another year of upgrades. If you did not renew, then you could continue using the last version available to you prior to expiry.
Under the new scheme, if your owned license is not expired, you still get upgrades until your license expires. Once your license expires, you are in the same situation you would have been in under the old scheme. You will either upgrade (renew) or you can continue using the last version available to you prior to expiry, and that includes the vB4 Forum package.
The term free comes in because there is not going to be an additional charge for you to upgrade to the vB4 Forum package with an active license. You will continue to get upgrades just like you did under the old scheme until your license expires.
On a related note, let’s say you have an active, owned license and you upgrade to the vB4 Forum package, and then your license expires. Just as with the old scheme, you upgrade (renew) or don’t. This time however the pricing scheme is different. Instead of the yearly $40/$60 renewal fee, the renewal (upgrade) is based on series so you would get upgrades for the life of the vB4 series.
As to the cost, it is $175 to go from an expired, owned license to the vB4 Forum series. The $175 is not a yearly fee; it is a fee to continue to get upgrades on the vB4 series, e.g., vB4.1, vB4.2, etcetera. This price is not yet displayed to you on the purchase page because vB4 Forum licenses for upgrades are not yet available. The $195 price you see is for new vB4 Forum licenses, not upgrades.
In summary, if you are interested in the vB4 Forum upgrade path, you get the vB 4.0 Forum upgrade and updates to the vB4 Forum series until your license expires. At that point you will need to pay the upgrade fee in order to continue getting updates on the vB4 Forum series.
If you are interested in the vB4 Suite upgrade path, you pay the upgrade fee now to get on the vB4 Suite series and will receive all updates to the vB4 Suite series.
Did your head spin even more? My eyes rolled into the back of my eyes…..
For the sake of argument points, let’s just boil everything down to some numbers and let’s think about the overall cost.
vBulletin version 4.0 Suite License costs 235.00/285.00 Respectively for a new license.
vBulletin version 4.0 Forum Only Licenses cost 175.00/195.00 Respectively for a new license.
For us holding old licenses, it costs us 130.00/250.00 respectively to upgrade to vBulletin 4 License. Let’s just forget for the moment that some of us are Project Tools and Blog License Holders as well as that just complicates the math. I prefer things to be a bit clear.
So for those holding legacy licenses, it costs $160.00 or $180.00 per license plus the upgrade fees.
Price 1A $160.00 + $130.00 = 290 (Pre)
PRice 1B $160.00 + $250.00 = 410 (Post)
Price 2A Price $180.00 + $130.00 = 310 (Pre)
Price 2B $180.00 + $250.00 = 430 (Post)
Each of the above prices are more expensive than a brand new regular license. I don’t care if it is pre or post sale.
Price 1A $160.00 + $130.00 = 290 (55.00 Difference
Price 1B $160.00 + $250.00 = 410 (125.00 Difference)
Price 2A $180.00 + $130.00 = 310 (75.00 Difference)
Price 2B $180.00 + $250.00 = 430 (145.00 Difference)
At the cheapest rate (which the really old vBulletin license holders bought licenses at), there is a 55.00 cost difference. Is Internet Brands trying to tell me it really costs them $55.00 in administrative fees? That’s like 1-2 years of free upgrades. Is Internet Brands telling me it will be close to that long of a commitment? At 40.00 a year for renewals, it’s 3-4 years  of upgrades before you recoup that cost. at 60.00, it’s between 2-3 years. Either way, you’re stuck for that long and it’s one expensive upgrade.
Let’s look at those who got hurt really badly and likely will have to pay 145.00 on top to get a new vBulletin 4 license just to get patches and updates after one year. I really feel sorry for those who got screwed out of their money. These are the people who really got hurt and all because they just bought their licenses recently. Personally, I feel Internet Brands did not deserve to take your money and slam you for “upgrading”. Plus they’re taking away our lifetime ticket and email support. Yup. No more support from the ticket system, yet we’re still getting charged more. Chances are you’re going to need it since there’s more frequent versions. So now tack on another year’s worth of support charged at 80.00 per year of support.
It’s far cheaper and more economical to buy brand new licenses from Internet Brands no matter what. The 235.00 Price is still cheaper than the 290.00/310.00 PreSale Pricing. The 285.00 price is more cheaper than the 410/430 postsale pricing. And who knows… maybe this was their intention all along…to force us to buy brand new licenses.
And if your eyes completely rolled into the back of your head and did a second roll, just take away this: We’re getting screwed. BIG TIME.

We’re not just license holders; we’re also stakeholders as well. We many not own shares in Internet Brands, but we certain play an important role. But let’s just look at license pricing here. It might be difficult for non-vBulletin license holders to understand, but let me speak from a business perspective and maybe that will shine some light.

Let’s establish some facts and simplify some of the logic.

When vBulletin came out, there were two licenses: Leased and Owned

Leased license: $85.00

A leased license, as it suggested, allowed users to utilize a vBulletin license for one year. Afterwards, it need to be renewed. This was an annual process

Owned License: $160.00

A owned license, as it suggested, deemed a license holder a lifetime owner for vBulletin. After a one year period, any version updates, regardless major or minor, required a $30.00 fee to regain another year’s access to downloads.

On April 29th, 2008, a new pricing scheme was implemented.

Leased Licenses: $100.00

Owned Licenses: $180.00, with a year’s download access costing $40.00 before 60 days after a license expired, or $60.00 after.

On October 13, 2009, another new pricing scheme was implemented.

Leased Licenses: Discontinued

Owned Licenses (Forum Only):

Presale : $175.00

Regular: $195.00

Support Fees for One Year: $80.00

Owned Licenses (Suite):

Presale Upgrade from Older License (Active): $130.00

Presale Upgrade from Older License (Inactive, 12 or Less Months): $190.00

Presale Upgrade from Older License (Inactive, 12 Plus Months): $210.00

Regular Price Upgrade from Older License: $250.00

Presale New License: $235.00

Regular New License Price: $285.00

Did your head spin at the last set of prices? Mine did. So let me attempt to clarify in the words of Ms. Carrie Anderson:

Let’s say you have an owned license. Under the old scheme, you received free upgrades for one year with your license purchase, at which point you either renewed or did not renew. If you renewed, you received another year of upgrades. If you did not renew, then you could continue using the last version available to you prior to expiry.

Under the new scheme, if your owned license is not expired, you still get upgrades until your license expires. Once your license expires, you are in the same situation you would have been in under the old scheme. You will either upgrade (renew) or you can continue using the last version available to you prior to expiry, and that includes the vB4 Forum package.

The term free comes in because there is not going to be an additional charge for you to upgrade to the vB4 Forum package with an active license. You will continue to get upgrades just like you did under the old scheme until your license expires.

On a related note, let’s say you have an active, owned license and you upgrade to the vB4 Forum package, and then your license expires. Just as with the old scheme, you upgrade (renew) or don’t. This time however the pricing scheme is different. Instead of the yearly $40/$60 renewal fee, the renewal (upgrade) is based on series so you would get upgrades for the life of the vB4 series.

As to the cost, it is $175 to go from an expired, owned license to the vB4 Forum series. The $175 is not a yearly fee; it is a fee to continue to get upgrades on the vB4 series, e.g., vB4.1, vB4.2, etcetera. This price is not yet displayed to you on the purchase page because vB4 Forum licenses for upgrades are not yet available. The $195 price you see is for new vB4 Forum licenses, not upgrades.

In summary, if you are interested in the vB4 Forum upgrade path, you get the vB 4.0 Forum upgrade and updates to the vB4 Forum series until your license expires. At that point you will need to pay the upgrade fee in order to continue getting updates on the vB4 Forum series.

If you are interested in the vB4 Suite upgrade path, you pay the upgrade fee now to get on the vB4 Suite series and will receive all updates to the vB4 Suite series.

Did your head spin even more? My eyes rolled into the back of my eyes.

For the sake of argument points, let’s just boil everything down to some numbers and let’s think about the overall cost.

vBulletin version 4.0 Suite License costs 235.00/285.00 Respectively for a new license.

vBulletin version 4.0 Forum Only Licenses cost 175.00/195.00 Respectively for a new license.

For us holding old licenses, it costs us 130.00/250.00 respectively to upgrade to vBulletin 4 License. Let’s just forget for the moment that some of us are Project Tools and Blog License Holders as well as that just complicates the math. I prefer things to be a bit clear.

So for those holding legacy licenses, it costs $160.00 or $180.00 per license plus the upgrade fees.

Price 1A $160.00 + $130.00 = 290 (Pre)

Price 1B $160.00 + $250.00 = 410 (Post)

Price 2A Price $180.00 + $130.00 = 310 (Pre)

Price 2B $180.00 + $250.00 = 430 (Post)

Each of the above prices are more expensive than a brand new regular license. I don’t care if it is pre or post sale.

Price 1A $160.00 + $130.00 = 290 (55.00 Difference

Price 1B $160.00 + $250.00 = 410 (125.00 Difference)

Price 2A $180.00 + $130.00 = 310 (75.00 Difference)

Price 2B $180.00 + $250.00 = 430 (145.00 Difference)

At the cheapest rate (which the really old vBulletin license holders bought licenses at), there is a 55.00 cost difference. Is Internet Brands trying to tell me it really costs them $55.00 in administrative fees? That’s like 1-2 years of free upgrades. Is Internet Brands telling me it will be close to that long of a commitment? At 40.00 a year for renewals, it’s 3-4 years  of upgrades before you recoup that cost. at 60.00, it’s between 2-3 years. Either way, you’re stuck for that long and it’s one expensive upgrade.

Let’s look at those who got hurt really badly and likely will have to pay 145.00 on top to get a new vBulletin 4 license just to get patches and updates after one year. I really feel sorry for those who got screwed out of their money. These are the people who really got hurt and all because they just bought their licenses recently. Personally, I feel Internet Brands did not deserve to take your money and slam you for “upgrading”. Plus they’re taking away our lifetime ticket and email support. Yup. No more support from the ticket system, yet we’re still getting charged more. Chances are you’re going to need it since there’s more frequent versions. So now tack on another year’s worth of support charged at 80.00 per year of support.

It’s far cheaper and more economical to buy brand new licenses from Internet Brands no matter what. The 235.00 Price is still cheaper than the 290.00/310.00 PreSale Pricing. The 285.00 price is more cheaper than the 410/430 postsale pricing. And who knows.  Maybe this was their intention all along; to force us to buy brand new licenses.

And if your eyes completely rolled into the back of your head and did a second roll, just take away this: We’re getting screwed. BIG TIME.