I’ll post later about Autodesk’s oft–predicted–here but just-announced plan to use price increases to push you out of your perpetual licenses, and the execrable spin being used to sell it.
This post is just to let you know that Autodesk has kindly provided a forum in which you can discuss this issue. Why not wander over there and have your say? Autodesk is deaf and blind on this subject so it won’t make a difference, but at least you might feel better to have your say and let others know they’re not alone.
Here’s the link to the Moving to Subscription forum. Here’s the welcome message.
Hot tip: keep a text copy of what you have to say. If, as happened before, Autodesk gets heavy with the censorship scissors and slices through your statement, you can repost …
In a thread in the Feedback & Questions about the Discussion Groups section of the Autodesk discussion groups, somebody called ACADuser contributed what I thought was a highly amusing bar graph as a test image. Inspired by this, I contributed a couple of test images of my own.
A few hours later, the whole thread magically disappeared! It seems a shame that I went to the effort of making those images, and all for nothing. The handful of people who would have seen them on the discussion groups have now missed out on the experience. So I’ve decided to make up for that by posting them here, where thousands of people can look at them instead.
Here’s the first one (not that amusing):
Here’s the second one. Given the circumstances, it seems somewhat prescient:
I will be airing my own views on the Autodesk discussion group changes in a future post. In the meantime, I have collected some reactions from other users. For the record, there has been only a little censorship in this area. Here are some of the comments that made it through unhindered:
- I’ve given it a fair shake and it’s just as bad as I imagined
- Goodbye, people. It was nice while it lasted
- it sucks
- it doesn’t look like you have any intention to meet the expectations of these people
- not [as] much traffic as there was before the change. I hope things improve
- I’m sure you’ve noticed the sourness many folks are having with this interface
- What a f’in f-up
- This is so aggravating that I am resorting to posting questions that may have already been answered vs. trying to find them via the search tool
- Very annoying
- We use NNTP …
The Autodesk discussion groups have quite a few problems at the moment, which I will discuss at length in future. One unnecessary problem that has been added to the mix is censorship. Having praised Autodesk in the past for allowing discussion to go unhindered, it’s only fair to slam heavy-handed moderation when I see it.
Before I get started, let me just say that Autodesk is entitled to moderate its discussion groups as it sees fit. The forum belongs to Autodesk and it can do what it likes with it. But just because Autodesk can censor its forums, that doesn’t mean it’s always a good idea to do so. Neither does that it mean that Autodesk is immune to public criticism of that censorship. There is no First Amendment obligation on Autodesk, but there are many other places that censored viewpoints can be repeated. Here, for example.
In this …
On 4 June 2010, Autodesk turned off NNTP access to its discussion groups as part of the process of updating its software to use a different engine (the new one is from Lithium – here are its own forums). I am preparing a large post about what I think of the new web interface, but for now let’s hear from you on that subject. Please vote in the poll on the right, and add your comments once you’ve had a chance to put the “state-of-the-art web experience Autodesk customers have come to expect” through its paces.
In related news, I have now closed the short-lived poll about the end of NNTP access to these groups. The results were:
Should Autodesk shut down NNTP access to its discussion groups?
Yes (8.8%, 5 Votes)
No (59.6%, 34 Votes)
Don’t care (31.6%, 18 Votes)