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Unsubscribing sveasoft. No fixed way to optout.

Discussion in 'Sveasoft Firmware' started by ixian, Jul 9, 2005.

  1. ixian

    ixian Network Guru Member

    Posted to sveasoft.com "General Questions" forum, Linksysinfo.org "Sveasoft Firmware" forum and CC'ed to sveasoft admin.

    Background:
    Sveasoft is in pratice run as an company with an paid for service for access to their "experimental" sourcecode.
    Regardless of how an organisation describes themself or their products, if they in practice behave like an firm then they are legally bound by the laws regulating such practices. It is then expected that they follow normal practices regarding customer relations.
    One of the chief legal demands for an business running an subscriber service is an easy access to and easy use of an system to handle cancelation of the subscriber service. In addition an canceling subscriber is entitled to either get an refund for an allready paid subscription period or to retain access to the subscription service until the time the subscription fee covers has passed.

    This has to my knowledge been an practice demanded by law in both US, EU and non EU european countries since there even was subscription services.(books, magazines etc.)

    Today my paypal account was billed for an $20 to continue my subscription as an paying customer/ member/ specialprivilegedbetatester. :roll:

    I was at first a bit surprised, since I haven't used or visisted this forum or used the services for quite an while. But in the end I knew I've registered for an subscription service.
    The to my suprise today, when I started to look for an link or way to unsubscribe to the sveasoft service I couldn't find one.
    Searching the forum or the websibe for the word "unsubscribe" or "unsubscription" turns up exactly 0 threads or words.(well, after I've posted this one it might turn up.)

    Why want to cancel the subscription?
    First because I've had no time or need for the talisman software at the moment. It's "special experimental software" is clunky and flaky at best.
    Second because I've grown to find the sveasoft business modell somewhat etically suspect. When they pedeled the alchemy firmware software they probably didn't go against the letter of the GPL, but they sure went against it's spirit. And when the new Talisman software was release as "GPL" free(as if that's an feature!) I've lost interest in using it.
    But in the end, any GPL voilation or nonvoilation has alwas been an disputed claim, especially since there are strong feelings on both sides on the subject of the GPL.
    And at last, what was the final straw pushing me to not bother to waste my time on sveasoft and start looking for an unsubscription service?
    The inclusion of an Digital Rights Management (DRM) in the download and access to the talisman firmware.
    When an third party software developmentfirm like sveasoft adopts the core ideas of RIAA and MPAA I find myself put of to put it mildly.

    So, I've faced with an noncancelable subscription run by an firm that chose the DRM tactics of RIAA and MPAA to enforce the "loyalty" of their customers. Personally, I've had enough.. I've went over to the talismen firmware from http://www.dd-wrt.com/ some months ago because I refuse to register my MAC adresses at an central authority with such low standards.

    To get to the point, and this is very important that people read very slowly before they react.
    I can go the easy way and send an private message to sveasoft admin, and probably it wouldn't be an problem to cancel the subscription. I could also dispute the subscription and demand an paypal arbitration. Since sveasoft's doesn't like or utilize GPL
    software anymore I feel no moral obligation towards allowing sveasoft to let them get off easy.
    But, in the end, my motives or feelings on the subject isn't what's crucial. Because the real legal challenge is an lack of an easy accessible opout mechanism. Regardless of how I feel about the GPL/DRM.

    If people believe in an market as an regulating force, they should addopt all the normal market mechanisms, not just an convenient selection of them.

    In short:
    I'm asking sveasoft's owner to honor normal marketing practices and put up and easy accessible way to cancel the paypal sveasoft subscription. I ask for an firm and clear commitment to this with an thread in the FAQ section of the sveasoft forum titled "How to unsubscribe" with an automated system to handle it. And when such an mechanism is in place I might chose to use it.

    Sincerly, Heikki Soerum, Norway aka. IXian
     
  2. littlewhoo

    littlewhoo Network Guru Member

    When I did subscribe to the Sveasoft forums, there was an explanation on the Paypal subscription page, that this is a subscription with yearly recurring payments, and I also got instructions from Paypal, how to stop this subscription anytime I want to. In addition to this, you can access all details of your permament subscriptions on your Paypal account-page.

    So if you want to subscribe for ony one year, just delete the subscription in your Paypal account after subscribing.

    Clear enough for me.

    I think Sveasoft can't stop the recurring payments from you Paypal account, even if he wanted to. It's the same, like giving a standing order to your bank. You are the only one, who can stop the payments and not the recipient.
     
  3. Toxic

    Toxic Administrator Staff Member

    I will allow this thread as long as you dont start a hatred campaign again.

    Anyway let me put my findings into words...

    There is a hidden unsubscription feature with sveasoft.com

    Setup a forum for DD-WRT (so sveasoft makes a claim you support ddwrt rogue software and not theirs) and you get instantaneous ban and your subs cancelled.

    you could also say you have passed on any beta src code to the public and they will also cancel your subs.

    just my 2 cents worth. :lol:
     
  4. ixian

    ixian Network Guru Member

    Update:
    Sveasoft has now, one hour after the original posting canceled my subscriber access to the sveasoft forum even though I've recently paid for an aditionall year of access.

    I would like to make it clear that I have never made such an demand/request and have recieved no explanation. It could be viewed as an retaliation for speaking openly against sveasoft's business practices.

    Regarding the paypal unsubscription, yes I finally found the unsubscription option in paypal, and I would like to apologize on that account. Regardless of this, there is an distinct lack of information on how to unsubscribe on sveasofts forum. In fact it's completely chemically clean of such information.
    It might not be illegal, but it's an suspect pratice that I fond immoral an unethical.

    And canceling an subscriber when such an subscriber has _not_ asked to be canceled is in fact Illegal on any account's. I clearly asked for an commitment to to FAQ regarding unsubscription and then I _might_ have canceled my subscription.
    Not that I didn't expect my subscription to suddenly vaporize, and that is my reason for crossposting to an forum not controlled by sveasoft's admin. :(

    To toxic:
    I ask that if you at any point se me produce anything remotely looking like an hate campaign to not only kill the thread, but to also kill my username and ban my IP adress for life.
    I firmly commited to not allowing this turn into an hate-thread. I was until an hour ago an paying customer of sveasoft, and I wanted an open, free and constructive debate on this issue. As sveasofts forum is closed to me now, I must take the debate to this forum.


    IXian
     
  5. ixian

    ixian Network Guru Member

    Update 2: To make it clear I posting the position of "sveasoft support" <support@sveasoft.com> public to avoid any misunderstandings.
    Of course, if you have an strong opinion I would like to beg and say please show an very strict and controlled selfcensorship when replying to this thread.
    After all, selfcensorship is the only acceptable censorship in principle in an democratic society.

    This is an quote from e-mail sent to me:
    I'm asking people to read the first posting in this thread since it's identical to the message sent to the sveasoft admin and posted in the General Questions sveasoft forum and make up their own mind if it was an flame or incitment to flaming.

    IXian.
     
  6. Toxic

    Toxic Administrator Staff Member

    I take it that you are now one happy ex customer:)
     
  7. ixian

    ixian Network Guru Member

    I'm an ex-customer. But I wouldn't call my self happy.
    Not mad or angry either though, very few things manage to make me angry. :|

    But, I've come to an decision regarding the situation. I'd like to get an moderator's permission to use linksysinfo.org forum to ask for contact with other ex-customers and to hear their experiences(privately). I'm especialy interested in getting in touch with subscribers who have been banned or had their subscription canceled for mentioning dd-wrt or criticising sveasoft. Swedish, scandinavian or European ex-customers doubly so.
    I want to hear their stories to se if my experience is an exception or the rule.

    Again, I'd prefer to keep any GPL issues out of this and the anger managment option enabled.

    Toxic: could I get such an permission?
     
  8. TheIndividual

    TheIndividual Network Guru Member

    Experiences with Sveasoft subscriptions

    Hello ixian,
    welcome to the club ;) Although I am one of those with "strong feelings" about this case, I will try to give you an objective analysis of Sveasofts business methods.
    As far as I know Sveasoft offered the ability to cancel via Paypal for years. Maybe they did not advertise it and maybe they didn't clearly state that it will automatically renew, but the opt-out has always been there.

    The sad thing is that you got banned and remove from the forum just for expressing this opinion. In the past, Sveasoft has often treated critical posts as a violation of the TOS and canceled the subscription of the "offender" even if they were in a nice tone.
    I do not know if they got their money back and if the TOS actually say that posting criticism is not allow. On the forum I created for free talk about WRT54G stuff and Sveasoft firmwares there are plenty of people who once were Sveasoft subscribers. Some were even banned (according to what they wrote) just for posting on that forum.

    As much as I hate their business tactics, until recently I always stated that you should buy a subscription if you need special support or direct access to the latest firmware. However after these events, I wouldn't recommend buying a Sveasoft subscription for obivous reasons. DD-WRT is a very valid alternative and worth supporting, their forum is part of the one mentioned and Brainslayer (developer) is a really nice guy. And it's free both in the financial sense as well as in the sense of freedom.
     
  9. Disman_ca

    Disman_ca Super Moderator Staff Member Member

    Re: Experiences with Sveasoft subscriptions

    I am in no way defending sveasoft but here are the Posting Guidelines

    For the record I was banned after posting to this thread http://www.linksysinfo.org/modules.php?name=Forums&file=viewtopic&t=3626 and was informed of the reason after I requested why. I still like their firmware and don't really have harsh feelings (although I probably should). I give them this much, the experience encouraged me to read more about GPL. Some pretty dry stuff but very informative. Its just too bad the sveasoft entity does not operate with more honorable approaches to resolving issues with members.
     
  10. Toxic

    Toxic Administrator Staff Member

    sure as long as the topic states no flame wars withing the thread, and there are no abussive attacks publicly on anyone. remeber I dont want a full scale war on sveasoft or anyone else, and whose is right or wrong with gpl violations.
     
  11. dmulk

    dmulk Network Guru Member

    Maybe there should be a poll to get an (anonymous) head count of how many people have been banned from sveasoft.

    I went through a simliar situation, had my account disabled because someone on Brain's board grabbed my sveasoft account name and used it on brain's board to post some flames.

    Ofcourse, Sveasoft banned my account without even checking to see if I was the same person or not.

    The irony ofcourse is that I never knew about dd-wrt until they reenabled my account and told me what happened. I then went looking...

    ....So I guess I am glad it all happened in the end... I got a better firmware option and get to deal with some much nicer people.


    It would be interesting to do the poll though, to see how many people have signed up and subsequently banned.

    <D>
     
  12. ixian

    ixian Network Guru Member

    An poll would be an excelent idea! I hadn't though about that one. Also check out dd-wrt's forum thread on this subject.

    DD-WRT forumthread


    IXian probe.
     

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