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Does anyone else feel that iLok is screwing them?

Discussion in 'Recording' started by csi, Apr 18, 2008.

  1. csi

    csi Active Member

    I have come across a situation that I honestly feel I am being taken advantage of. I would like some objective feedback on this considering that many of you will come across this same situation at sometime or another.

    Here is the deal: I purchased, in this case, Auto Tune 4 from Antares some time ago. To use this software Antares along with many other plugin developers have contracted with iLok to secure their software. I would greatly assume that iLok charges these developers to use their system. Which, for the record, I totally understand the need for copy protection and agree with it. So, to use this software that I bought & own I need to authorize it through iLok - which works for the most part perfectly. Now, here is the problem: if I decide that I no longer want to use this software and would like to take the authorization off of my iLok or sell the software, again that I own, iLok is going to charge me $25. The problem with this is not necessarily the $25 fee, I'm cheap but not that cheap, it's the principle. I am not the one that 'hired' iLok to secure the software the manufactures did! It's bad enough that no one 'gave' me an iLok - I had to buy it! But now I am going give them more money so I can do what I want with my software? Absurd! Totally absurd and in my opinion defies all logic!!

    I have never been the type to sit back and just get taken advantage of...so I ask you, do you feel this is fair? Or would you feel like the 'new kid' in the jail cell getting something that you really didn't sign up for? Honestly I think a lawyer would have a field day with this!

    I would image that iLok has made a good amount from those of us that have to use this system and would like to transfer ownership of your software.

    I wish I had an alternative way to get around this but essentially my software is being held hostage by iLok and quite frankly I am not happy about it!


    Also, iLok is aware of this post and if you do feel that they are taking advantage of us now is the time to speak. Possibly they will see that what they are doing is wrong and change policy.
  2. Kapt.Krunch

    Kapt.Krunch Well-Known Member

    I think the highlighted part may explain the confusion. One might think they own something they paid for, but in the case of software, you basically just purchased the right to legally use their software, with conditions.

    In the eyes of the copyright holder, whether it be software or music or movies, you may even have no right to resell it without their express written consent.

    Is it a pain? Yep. But that's the only way they can have any legal standing to protect themselves. And, if you were the company making the software, the studio releasing the movie, or the band releasing your music, you'd want the same sort of protection.

    Of course it doesn't always work. But the fear of prosecution keeps many more people from spreading around pirated goods than would happen if they didn't have these restrictions written in the Terms of Usage, etc.

    Gotta look at both sides of the coin.

  3. csi

    csi Active Member

    Hi Kaptain,

    Yes I do see and understand that. However, iLok is a 3rd party not the software developer. If a software developer wants to put a transfer fee on their software, which many do, that is their prerogative. For iLok to hold my authorization hostage for $25 in which that money is going to them that is not the other side of the coin. Again, they were hired by the developer not me.
  4. pr0gr4m

    pr0gr4m Well-Known Member

    So...If they didn't charge you the $25 bucks but you still had to jump through the same hoops (whatever they are) to transfer the registration, would you be happy with that? If so, then it IS the $25 bucks that you have a problem with.

    Here's a bunch of crap that I though of off of the top of my head...

    Let's assume that at some point some where in the iLok system "something" needs to be done to A. release a registration from one person and B. assign that registration to another.

    That "something" probably needs to be administered either by some one or some thing and that likely costs time and/or resources which is to say that it costs money to so.

    Many people buy software and some of them resell it. I have no idea how many times this happesns per day but I can see how it could be anywhere from a few to a dozen or more per day.

    We can assume that the cost of initial registration via the iLok service is factored in to the purchase price of whatever software we purchase or the cost of the iLok itself. However, the cost of the ongoing administration work (as mentioned above) is most likely not included in that price. iLok needs to recoup the costs incurred by these registration transfers and they do this buy charging for it.

    Basically what I'm getting at here is that it takes work on iLoks part to transfer a registration and iLok don't work for free. I don't know if that "work" is manual or completely automated but something is done...and they charge for it.

    Perhaps it would be better to charge a higher price for the iLok to cover the costs incurred for retistration transferrs but then people who buy software to keep it forever would be mad about paying money for something they will never use.

    Is there any competition for iLok? Perhaps this would be a great business to get into. Come up with a similar system and compete with them using a better process for the transferral of registrations.
  5. BobRogers

    BobRogers Well-Known Member

    Transaction costs are all over the place. It's not something I think of as a matter of principle. This is something that a software company wants to farm out to a middle man - it's not their core business. But it is something I watch for all the time. You have to pay attention to and factor into you financial decisions. It is a legitimate part of your cost of doing business. Factor it in to the price you charge for retail.
  6. pr0gr4m

    pr0gr4m Well-Known Member

    ...and you bought the product from the developer that used this system. You knew it used this system and you should have known what you were getting into before buying it. If you didnt know about this registration transfer processes is that your fault, the software developers fault or iLok's fault?

    You could say that it's the developers fault because they don't say in big bold letters that transfers of registrations will cost the purchaser extra cash. But they also don't tell you LOTS of other things about their product.

    You could say that it's iLoks fault because when you buy the thing they don't tell you the what's required to transfer a license. But they too don't tell you everything about their product right there.

    You could say that it's your fault because you didn't read each and every piece of information before purchasing the software/iLok.

    Me? I say it's no ones "fault". Technically iLok does state that transfers of registrations will be charged an "administation" fee. In reality, not eveyone reads every damn thing about a product before purchasing it. This is one of those things thats no one thinks about until it comes up and when it does, this is the exact reaction they all have. It's just the way of the world.

    People are lazy. Companies take advantage of that.

    If you knew about the transfer costs at the time you were purchasing Auto Tune and the iLok would you still have purchased the software?

    Now that you know about the transfer costs, are you going to continue to buy software that makes use of the iLok system?
  7. Space

    Space Well-Known Member

    Pass the 25.00 fee on to whoever you are selling your product to and move on.

    ILok is not the one in question here. The companies that use this kind of service are. And the question they ask is "can you protect my product from theft?" to which iLok says "yes we can!"

    Ever bought or sold a vehicle? House? Had utilities turned on? Somebody is going to pay somebody somewhere everytime something of value or requirement is bought or sold.

    Forget the car, house, utilities. Cellphones! Now THAT is a way to legally steal, keep stealing and get away with it forever as best as I can tell!
  8. BobRogers

    BobRogers Well-Known Member

    Yeah, if you want someone to blame, try the people who steal software. And the next time a software thief says, "I'm not hurting anyone," you can link to this post.
  9. Wim_Mu

    Wim_Mu Guest

    Hi guys,

    This is Wim D'haes from Mu Technologies one of the companes that has chosen iLok for copy protection for our Mu Voice plug.

    Is it justified that PACE charges 25$ for a license transfer? Sure is! Most licenses are personal and only transferrable when changing from one owner to another. You are not permitted to lend or hire your licenses. If there would be no transfer fee everyone would go like: Hey Jeff can I use this and that plug for the weekend? Just transfer to my account and I'll transfer back later. This is not allowed by any software license I know of.

    Secondly, the transfer is a service provided by PACE. This service costs them money so they charge. Simple as that.

    Sad but true, the honest customers pay the bill. But if nobody is willing to pay for plugs, then nobody will invest years in developing a decent plug. At least that's what we tried.
  10. timothysklugh

    timothysklugh Member

    So basically

    So basically, the system is set up (even legally) to always have to consumer take it up the rear. How wonderful.

    Timothy S. Klugh
    Grove City, Ohio, USA

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