I Have written about the various Humble Bundles that not only do something good by bringing attention to deserving Indie developers, they also donate a portion of their proceeds to charity, making it an all-around great deal. But as was brought to my attention after the first one was announced, copies of those games were quickly found on file sharing sites! Imagine that – something you could get for $1 … but you STILL have to steal it!
Quiescence Music offered up all of their existing lessons and tutorials and other resources as a $1 one-week trial. More recently Quiescence Music founder Edward Weiss announced he was raising his monthly rate from $19 to $39. My honest assessment was that he had seen such great success that he was struggling to keep up with demand. While I know he is enjoying great success, that apparently isn’t the reason for the rate hike.
Here is the contents of his latest newsletter:
Dear Pianoscapes Subscriber,
As you may already know, I raised rates on my piano course a
few days ago. But … I just went back to my old special. And I’d like
to explain why.
I try different offers on my website to get people to sign up for my
piano course. No big surprise there. But the $1 dollar offer was different and
really opened my eyes.
One person subscribed for the $1 offer, came up to the site, literally took
all my content and then initiated a chargeback with paypal so they wouldn’t
have to pay anything. That really infuriated me. So I raised the course fee.
But that was a mistake. I don’t want to do that for the majority of people
who see the value here and for that, I do apologize.
So … you can still get the course for just $19 a month. And here’s this
weeks issue of Pianoscapes. It’s a good one and contains video!
Think about it for a second – Pianoscapes was offering EVERYTHING for $1 on a one-week trial basis, which meant the ability to download as well as view online all of the resources they offer. Simply cancel before a week expires and there are no further charges. It is a pretty great deal.
Yet someone not only came in with the intent of pulling off all of the material possible for that $1 before canceling – which is a common enough tactic – but actually then had the audacity to seek a chargeback from PayPal, essentially seeking a refund for the $1! Here is what PayPal says about chargebacks:
A chargeback, also known as a reversal, is when a buyer asks their credit card issuer to reverse a transaction after it has been completed. It is available only to users who make a payment funded by their credit or debit card.
There are three main reasons a buyer will do this:
The purchased item never arrived.
The item was significantly different than advertised.
Their credit card was used without their permission to purchase the item fraudulently.
There is only ONE reason why this person could have done this: they are an amoral scumbag with no regard for others. Period.
Look at it this way – I have never subscribed to Quiescence Music as I have decent enough skills and my son is a rather proficient pianist, but I have STILL enjoyed enough free content to allow me to happily and strongly recommend the site and his methods. AND to know that there are a load of resources available, all of which exactly meets what is stated in the newsletter and on the site.
There is an old saying ‘this is why we can’t have nice things’. And because of one loathsome scumbag, thousands of people currently gaining the joy of learning piano easily almost lost out on the ability to easily afford those lessons.
Because of one person unwilling to pay $1 for what they already accessed, amounting to thousands of hours of effort on the part of a person passionate about helping others learn the joy of music.
It is a sad statement not just because of this incident, but because of how often it has happened with ‘pay what you want’ game bundles, ‘pay what you want’ music, and loose refund policies by indie game developers (such as Spiderweb) that have allowed people to play entire games and THEN seek refunds. Sad.