Fstoppers Discussion: About the Outcry Over the New Adobe Creative Cloud

Adobe Creative Cloud, in lieu of Adobe Creative Suite 7, has some great new features but also some hotly contested issues including the loss of disc support and move to a monthly payment feature for all future software. Mike Kelley, Rebecca Britt and I (Jaron Schneider) discuss what this means for creatives and why it may not be the big deal some are trying to make it out to be.

Mike, Rebecca and I all seem to be on board with where Adobe is going, but not everyone on the Fstoppers Staff is. We're hearing mixed sentiments. Some don't like the idea of "renting" software, while others love the convenience and the forward thinking Adobe is pushing.

It's an interesting debate, and one we likely won't hear the end of any time soon. What are your thoughts?

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I still have to understand why in EU the same product costs an extra 65%, and we are not talking about physical goods where you have shipping costs, but it's the same bloody download from a server.

legal thiefs....

Because, as a business operating in a free market economy, Adobe is free to charge whatever the hell they want for their goods and services.

Dont like it? Don't buy it.

Or, I guess, whinge on the internet. That should help.

I guess you are american isn't it? It's easy to use the free market economy as a good excuse for everything, especially when you are in the "right" side, no?
If adobe was european and you were the one to be overcharged, I would seriously doubt you would have the same opinion.

I'm not American. But nice try.

I've worked for Silicon Valley software for years, and software costs more in europe for a simple reason: The structural costs of doing business are incredibly higher than in the US. It's about taxes, real estate, benefit costs, how much it costs if you have to make someone redundant. Costs of product and manual translations and printing of manuals for smaller market languages adds additional very large and significant costs. I worked for a hardware manufacturer and many places had a very high import duty - some contries in south america had 100% duty on any electronics at the time, don't know what they are now

Yes but we are not talking to set up any business in europe, they have to sell the same software from the same server, there nothing to build, nothing to create.
And still, we are not talking about a 10/15% increase, but a 65%.

Let me give you an example of the tax situation.

VAT adds as much as 25% to the cost of a product, in the US it's about 4-6% depending on the state.

The taxes a company as to pay on employee salary in France can be : 40% or more, in the US it's about 8%

Large companies like Adobe have offices throughout Europe for both sales and training. The costs add up.

andy sackey's picture

Not really a balanced argument for 7 minutes of video.

I'm a video & gfx editor and I buy my software but I don't upgrade every year because most of the time the software has not evolved enough to spend more money to upgrade.
I still use CS5.5 and never felt the need to upgrade to CS6 so I can still carry on using CS5.5 till I feel like upgrading.

Try doing that with the new Adobe Creative Cloud model.

Yep, that's the rub. I love Photoshop, but I'm hanging with CS5 until, well, forever I guess. I can't afford to pay 3-4x as much for a product because Adobe wants everyone to always have the lastest junk. I jump about every 3 generations unless something major comes along. I understand that Adobe is a business that can do whatever it wants, but a lot of users CANT afford the perpetual upgrades and since the option is to lose out if you can't afford it, it'll put the breaks on for a lot of users. In the end, it could hurt Adobe. Only time will tell. I'll admit that I'm in a REALLY small niche and area, but nearly 100% of Adobe users I've talked with this week won't subscribe (about 50). If this ends up being consistant across the board, it'll be interesting.

This has nothing to do with the numbers of people that maybe pirating the CS software. It has everything to do with the amounts of monies people are able to place into a 'hobby' or they way they edit photos in their homes. The idea of placing a set amount on software and working with it at your own pace, or until the need arises to update is one thing. But to see every advancement hence forth to be reflected in tutorials, workshops, seminars..all based on whether you'll buy into this? It's crazy. This is a hobby for most people. The added per month+bandwidth+accessibility+what you will/will not buy into on cloud= Not feasible. This kid in the video who doesn't have the common sense to iron his shirt is "so excited" and we should all embrace change.. OH please !.

The guys who need to edit for a living not sitting next to connection are really going to be pissed.

CC will be cracked as any other software from adobe before.
maybe it´s even simpler to crack the CC protection then todays protection.. believe me you will see.

What I have a problem with, is that when I have bought, or upgraded the package or piece of software, in the traditional way... if I have a long period where I'm out of money, I still will be able to use the software.

With this model, I can spend a whole lot of money on a subscription, and in the end, I'll be left with nothing. My files will be locked in in a format based on software I paid to use, and I will not have a piece of software that can open my files when I am not subscribed.

Graham Marley's picture

Remember how well those interest-only variable rate mortgages worked out for new homebuyers? Neither do I.

Would Fstoppers be ok with Canon and Nikon requiring a monthly fee to use our gear? Plug your camera into your computer to make sure you're up to date or the firmware locks up. IT'S THE FUTURE!

I'm hoping for a really serious backlash, companies cannot turn investment spending into infinite account-drain subscriptions on any type of purchase they see fit.

I recently graduated from college and the student discounts on CS6 are what allowed me to buy it in the first place. Students are really going to hurt with this.

Bardac Dragos Mihai's picture

I agree with Alessio Michelini. I would really like to hear an explication for this the pricing strategy!


don´t be fooled into this crap!!!.

when you stop the subscription you won´t be able to use adobes proprietary file formats!!!
you can´t load AE or premiere projects for example in other software.
and if you stop paying for the cloud you don´t have working apps.... unlike today with CS.

so even when you decide to switch to, for example NUKE, you still have to pay adobe when you want to open an old project!!
you can´t just install your bought CS x version again... because you don´t have one!!

that is not a problem for TIFF files etc.. but it IS a big problem for other adobe formats!!

Antonio Carrasco's picture

yes, good point. I realized yesterday that I have thousands of 16 bit layered PSD files. I was using this format to store final versions of retouched photos because I could go back and edit the layers if necessary.

Never did I imagine that Adobe would enact this abusive pricing policy towards users.

Here are the problems with the first half of the video:

A. People will still Pirate the software. Don't kid yourselves.

B. I am a professional and use this everyday, this model has its positives for sure, but it also gives professionals with very small budgets no option--ie nonprofits and educational institutions.

C. The software has been fully downloadable since CS5--diskless workflow is nothing new.

D. Adobe Anywhere for video requires an entire backend server with two racks and multiple gpu processors ( aka $$$$$)

E. I ran the numbers yesterday and educational institutions (where I work) will pay up to 2X more per seat in a two year period, depending on what level of the suite you are purchasing; some people only need the production suite vs the master collection--large price difference here in the old model--and now everyone is forced to buy either one piece of software for $240 a year or the master collection for anywhere between $360 and $720 depending on their business situation.

There is nothing wrong with the license model and there are some good things about the subscription model--but both of them work better for different users. Dropping the license model is a bad move for the consumer/professional no matter how you cut it. Why not make them the equivalent price for a set period of usage (something very close to update cycle) and if people on the license model don't want to spend the money to update they can keep using the old software until they are ready to spend the money again.

The program updates on the other hand are great. I'm excited to use them (yes I will be moving to subscription because I have to). Premiere and After Effects have some awesome new tools (and stuff we've all been missing from FPC7). Photoshops RAW as a filter is an awesome addition, cant wait to try that out!

yeh these kids in the video are to naive...

Antonio Carrasco's picture

yeah, no discs/digital download is not the issue here. it's the software rental concept

you are a bunch of clueless kids.

adobe owns you when you join the cloud and you have no exist strategy.

you have to pay EVERY month as long as you want to use your proprietary adobe projects.
to use old projects you have to pay adobe... because otherwise you have no working software.

even when you don´t need new features.... you have to pay adobe.
im a nuke user today.... but when i decided to work on one of my old AE projects i can do that.
i simply install AE again. but i can´t do that with CC... with CC i had to pay again.

Graham Marley's picture

I don't even think I'd be able to watch the video for one very specific reason: This is a massive breakdown of the consumer/business relationship. Consumers buy and spend when it makes sense to them. This is purchasing power and it keeps business in working order.

Adobe has flatlined all possible variations of individual purchasing power into one, hard-as-nails model, where you MUST buy their upgrades WHEN they say, or you cannot get any work done. For every example given of how CC might be more affordable than CS, I've seen at least one other model based on someone else's perfectly legit spending habits (including my own) that show it costs more. This is worse than a price hike, however, because it is holding parts of our livelihoods hostage. Combine the two, and you have a huge purchasing power disadvantage, and you are ripe for the fleecing.

I don't know how the last decade has not taught anyone saying "this isn't a big deal" that when large corporations do not have any consumer recourse or competition, bad things happen. Boycott CC.

well look at these kids.. they don´t even know how to shave.
no wonder they fall for every cloud or social media crap.
brainless zombies....

Mike Kelley's picture


Antonio Carrasco's picture

I really wish government would get involved.

Microsoft has a de facto monopoly with Office. Adobe has a monopoly with Photoshop. These corporations are switching to these new software rental policies which harm the majority of consumers.

Yeah i would love to see the government come in with a anti trust law suit and split up adobe that would be great !

Antonio Carrasco's picture

I think a lot of people thought Adobe products were already overpriced prior to Creative Cloud, but we had put up with it because it's the industry standard and you only had to upgrade every few years. You could usually do just fine skipping a version or two. So people didn't complain as much as they should have.

This new software rental policy is tantamount to robbery.

"Get on the train"??

Companies that have been around since before you were born have said those very words. Go and look for them now.

The market dictates products & services, not the other way around.

This is a bad idea. Just like the wrinkled shirt.

well they are making money with advertising this kind of crap.. what do you expect from them.. honesty?