Support » Plugins » Requires signup to a commercial service?

  • Mark


    In order to download this plugin, you need to subscribe first. The email confirmation you get contains a link and the following text:


    Click the link above to give us permission to send you
    information. It’s fast and easy!

    The site linked to is not the MaxBlogPress site; apparently, a commercial service is used to handle the subscriptions. What I don’t like about is is the “give us permission to send you information” part. Who’s going to guarantee me that my email is not going to end up in some commercial database?

Viewing 15 replies - 1 through 15 (of 23 total)
  • That is a commercial mailing list. Some plugin owners (myself included) do use plugin sharing as a way of building a list that we can market to. Some even SELL (shock horror!) their plugins, to cover their support and development costs. Again, myself included.

    I guess you have two options. Subscribe, download the plugin, and then unsubscribe (which is done in one click with Aweber). Or don’t use the plugin and write one yourself that does the same function.

    Sorry to be blunt, but some of us do have to earn a living, just like people who sell quality WP themes.

    Hope that helps,

    Oh, and I should add that aweber are not shady. They are probably the most highly-respected provider of mailing list services around today. You HAVE to click that link to be added to their list, and if you click the unsubscribe link (that comes at the bottom of each mail you receive via their service), you WILL be unsubscribed. End of story.

    The service they offer is no different to your bank going to a third-party print-and-mail company to send you mail about their latest insurance deal. The bank’s main business is not mailshot management, so they outsource it. The person who wrote this plugin isn’t in the email newsletter business, so he outsourced it. Nice and simple really.


    I’ve never heard of aweber being referred to as a shady service before!

    Aweber are an autoresponder service.Probably the foremost one available at the moment and currently being considered for takeover by Google. Autoresponders allow messages to be sent to you without the site owner having to address every subscriber individually.

    If you don’t like it then don’t subscribe..after all by signing up you are asking to receive correspondence from the site owner.. How do you expect them to contact you with updates if you don’t subscribe?

    I am not so concerned about aweber (see above) but more about this:
    In order to download this plugin, you need to subscribe first.
    That makes any “product” NOT FREE – although the plugin’s homepage carefully avoids mentioning anything about licensing and/or the price of it. If I have to give my email address in exchange for something – then that’s the price.

    Interestingly, Codex got spammed today with someone adding a very similar plugin under a different name. And to download that plugin you have to register and receive a password.

    It seems too much like a coincidence that the user that added the stuff to Codex did it in a mamer very similar to the way MaxBlogPress tried to add stuff to Codex in the past.

    I’d rather give my email address than the $97 or $197 I’ve seen being charged for some plugins. Anyway thats what throw away email addresses are for… The temporary inbox plugin for firefox is your friend!

    For continuity purposes: Andrewpeacock’s two comments were released from the akismet queue 7 hours after trackbike’s comment above.

    Moderator Samuel Wood (Otto)

    (@otto42) Admin

    The only requirement for being listed in the WordPress plugins directory is that the plugin has a GPL license.

    I’ve downloaded the plugin and had a look at it. It appears to be GPL licensed. It’s also directly downloadable from here, without subscription.



    Thanks, andrewpeacock, for clarifying. Let me make clear that I’m not shocked by people who try to ‘SELL’ plugins.

    I intended to append a question mark to the title of the topic — reading the other replies, ‘shady’ was definitely not the right word for Aweber. I cannot edit my own OP anymore; Otto42, could you perhaps change the title of the topic into “Requires signup to a commercial service”?

    My main issue however was (and still is) with the text of the confirmation mail, which appears to imply more than just signing up to download a plugin (“Click the link above to give us permission to send you information.”) That text, coupled with the fact that the confirmation link led to a commercial service, just didn’t give me a perfectly secure feeling. Which is why I posted here for clarification.

    The greatest part is I don’t even receive the confirmation link email. I’ve tried 4 times, with 2 different email addresses and I’ve even emailed them directly.


    Did you try this?

    Yea I did. It’s the same thing. Requires confirmation link to proceed. I click to activate and it says an email was already sent to me. It’s not caught in my spam so I have no idea why I wouldn’t get it.

    Sorry, I think Otto missed the fact that if there is no subscription requirement on the Extend page… the plugin still tricks you into registration: when activated, it opens a page in your blog’s admin where you must register.

    Yea, I used another email that worked. After I clicked the activation link, i quickly “unsubscribed” from their list, but wasn’t able to activate the plugin.

    After re-subscribing to the service, I was.

    @moshu, with all due respect NOTHING is free then by your yardstick. It takes time to download, unzip and install a plugin or theme. I bill at $75 an hour so therefore it’s costing me, right? There is a price for everything. Usually “free” means I don’t have to open my wallet or click on a PayPal link.

    I’m not talking specifically about the tricky subscription requirement; I have waaay too much needless email in my inbox right now. But talking about plugins in general that require nothing more than your own time and effort to install them. 🙂

    BTW, I LOVE to click on plugin developers’ paypal and wishlist links. They are some of the unsung heroes of WP, very much underappreciated.

    Joni 😛

Viewing 15 replies - 1 through 15 (of 23 total)
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