Premium Access for update of MCEBuddy not working, sign-in fails, was ok for 5 years

I bought lifetime Premium Access five years ago for use on my PC. For the last few days I have been trying to download the latest BETA version. When I go to the usual website https://www.mcebuddy2x.com/MCEBuddy/PREMIUM_ACCESS/ and click on the link to download the latest BETA version I am asked for my username and password. I enter the details I was given 5 years ago. These have always worked before but now they are not recognised. Is there a temporary problem with the website? Is there a workaround?

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There is a new license required for 2.6.x see Announcements

You can access, install and use up to versions 2.5.x using your old license

Lifetime doesn’t feel so lifetime does it? :rofl:

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So for those of us who bought a “lifetime” license, who do we speak to about a refund?

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Thank you for your feedback. We absolutely appreciate all the support our users have shown us, however, after over 10 years and many many releases we have had to adapt our model to continue providing support and developing apps. Releases 2.6.x and newer will be covered under a different support license and may evolve down the line as we continue to introduce new features and products.

For the purpose of clarification, we are not restricting usage of the, now renamed, legacy license which still allows you to install and use the legacy unlimited releases (up to 2.5.7 and any subsequent 2.5.x updates) for life.

Those of us who bought “the unrestricted version with free lifetime updates” should continue getting such. It would be one thing to request donations if needed, but demanding renewals from those with prepaid lifetime subscriptions is wrong and likely illegal.

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You sold us a lifetime license and are now attempting to rescind it. Then you have the audacity to send out emails thanking people for their loyalty while saying they need to pay you more money each year to keep using what they have already paid for. This is a move that shows you have no loyalty.

You need to honor your original agreement with everyone who paid you money in exchange for a lifetime license, or issue refunds and apologies.

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Hey Goose, First off thanks for the many years I have used the product.

I understand times change and the support/pay model has to change. I understand people put time and effort into a product and get very little back on a lifetime product. You and others that help you code have to eat and I totally understand. PlayOn did the same thing and I image that someday soon Plex and Emby will also follow suit.

I will say that giving people just a little over two weeks to decide the discount offer is not good business. At least offer a full month or better yet, to the end of the year would be more tolerable and not such a slap in the face. Also updates going forward should be more/better enhancements and or features and functionality. Support if needed should also increase like ticket system or something better etc. If you want people to pay more they are going to expect more.

All just suggestions. MCEBuddy is a great product. I will continue to use MCEBuddy unless something better comes along. But I will also hold off if just a few items are fixed or options I don’t use in the few releases that come out in a year.

Also please better explain lifetime usage. So if I buy the Lifetime usage + 4 years of updates and say at 4 years it ends at 2.8.x I can update through 2.8.x and use it forever of that version only? I assume yes.
Maybe reword lifetime usage to the current version you land on at end of 4 years is where you stay when 4 years of updates is up. Lifetime usage gives the wrong impression. Again just a suggestion.

Good luck with the decision, I hope it works out.

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I purchased this software in January 2022 before the cutoff mentioned in the patch notes that I only noticed until now. So this “unrestricted version with free lifetime updates” that was predominantly displayed on the website is basically no more. Did it even exist? Since I paid a not unreasonable- but not exactly cheap either- amount of 29.99, and it doesn’t seem like this software has been updated between 2.5.7 and 2.6.1. I hope I’m misunderstanding that, as this seems odd. I am also not sure of the legality of advertising and taking money for something you were not planning to fulfill.

I understand Lifetime models are quite a difficult and often unsustainable business model, but this seems like the wrong way to do this. I assure you that I don’t want to seem as entitled that I truly expected a software that literally has a lifetime of updates. However, I feel it’s a reasonable expectation that I would get all the updates until you released a MCEBuddy 3.X sequel app sometime (an appropriate amount of time and update cycles) down the line. I feel that this is how many most softwares with “lifetime updates” are handled, but I might be wrong.

To purchase software and not seem to receive any updates, then be asked to pay up for an already promised update within this range of versioning seems a little insulting to me. I get that you need to make money, but this could have been handled better. It would have been better to provide updates and then at a certain, appropriate, point, like above, release a new MCEBuddy 3 app. I imagine this would also work better from a legal perspective too.


EDIT: I have since received the following response:

–

Hi, I’m very sorry about your situation. The old license was a lifetime license (not updates) for usage but I do understand your concern about the timing of your purchase. I will be happy to send you a complimentary license for 2 years of updates. Please let me know your preferred email address to have it sent.

–

While I really do appreciate the offer, and I think that is good step and I would recommend you offer this to others who have purchased in the aforementioned time frame in order for them to at least feel like they received their moneys worth. I am in a fortunate position that I do not really need this software at the moment. I may revisit this software in the future, but I am not going to buy it based on updates, but by its current state- as there is obviously no guarantee of any updates at all.

Honestly, what I really do not appreciate, is this weird attempt at gaslighting. The main page of the website is cached by the Wayback machine, I can see what I bought:

https://web.archive.org/web/20221207194348/http://www.mcebuddy2x.com/#a3

This was December 2022, 7 months after 2.5.7.

May I direct your attention to the following:

–

“PREMIUM ACCESS PROGRAM”

“If you love the trial version buy the unrestricted version with free lifetime updates”

–

Sometime in January it was changed to this:

https://web.archive.org/web/20230128062601/http://www.mcebuddy2x.com/#a3

“lifetime license + 24 months of free updates & support”

–
Even by this flawed gaslight logic, this is a further devaluation of the license of anyone who purchased between January 2022 and January 2023. They should have automatically been given AT LEAST one more year of updates, not just given a “pay up, your license wasn’t for updates, even though we have actively advertised this on our main page for years” email. I want to clarify that I appreciate you offering it to me, but it shouldn’t take people complaining for this to happen. This should be the baseline for what is a responsible and moral way to get out unsustainable business model.

Honestly, I would -if you can- opt to give one or two years to all legacy purchases as a sign of loyalty on your part, given that you are breaking an obvious promise, potentially illegally so. I would also fully and directly acknowledge that this is what you are doing, as I think honesty goes a long way, Because I get that lifetime models are unsustainable, it usually never pans out the way we hope.

I am not really that upset for myself here, I can honestly do without this program, I am a little upset for all the others who kind of got screwed here.

Good luck.

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I cant believe this went the PlayOn route which killed that program for me after buying lifetime license with updates and have it taken away. With this new model what is the current roadmap as i expect some big changes each year to be buying updates even at a discount. I really cant justify buying a second time with no future enhancements planned out and shared.

I also agree on the two week buying time with a discount is very short notice as i had no idea since i don’t really follow announcements posted here.

When I paid a couple of years back, the website said:

PREMIUM ACCESS PROGRAM

If you love the trial version buy the unrestricted version with free lifetime updates

Buy premium version $29.99

Contact us for ad extraction, analytics and commercial services

There was nothing that said this is only for a specific version, or X amount of updates, or X years of updates. If they need money, trying to pull this scummy stuff is not the way.

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Thanks for your feedback Mike. This was not an easy decision for us and I apologize for the lack of clarity and communication. At the end of the update term you can continue using whatever version of MCEBuddy you have installed for life. We appreciate you bringing the offer period to our attention and you’re right it’s too short. We’re going to extend the offer period for atleast a month if not longer. We do plan to add more features in addition to our regular bug fix releases. Many of the new features are driven by our community so feel free to let us know what you’d like to see and what can be done better in the New Features category. We try to be responsive and encourage community votes to help us prioritize the requests, you can find the vote button for each New Features or Bugs.

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Would you mind responding to those of us to whom you sold a lifetime license and are now trying to rug pull?

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Be sure to cache it yourself as well.

I copied several snapshots from before December 2021, when I bought my “lifetime” license.

You never know, they could request that archive erase it and it will be helpful to have copies from many sources for the class action.

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Applying this new licensing schema to your new customers is fine, but don’t screw over the people that supported you all these years. Imagine if Plex decided one day that their lifetime Plexpass was no longer lifetime … no one would trust them anymore. Well … I feel the same way about you guys now.

I will not be paying again for this software.

Very disappointing …

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1st thing off the bat is MCEBuddy is great and I’ve been super happy with it and go tons of usage out of it for 5+ years. Now if the Elephant in the room, I don’t think this license change was handled well at least looking at the forum posts. However after the clarifications provide by the Team I understand where they are coming from.

That being said 100% agree that this change was needed as software doesn’t continually develop itself for free. I also like the model they adopted as they could’ve chosen a much worse SAS model much like Playon did.

Things I would like to see:

  1. I like the new model pay for License + Year(s) of updates + you keep using latest version you had access to even after support, I feel like this is the fairest model to everyone involved and will hope you will stick with it long term.
  2. I would hope to see a little but more of a uptick on newer features/due to this change.
  3. To people talking about violating previous license the one when you install MCEBuddy never mentions they couldn’t change the license like this is it a bit sketchy/crumby YES, but as I laid out above makes sense for long term health of MCEBuddy’s development.
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Advertising a product as a one time purchase with free lifetime updates, and then demanding more money isn’t an issue of what their ToS says or doesn’t say during installation.

Furthermore, if they want to change to a subscription model, that is completely their prerogative. If they want to attempt to extend their new model to previous customers, who paid them money for a lifetime license, then they need to either honor their sale, or deal with the ramifications of attempting to rip people off.

If they made a mistake in selling lifetime licenses that is not the fault of any of their customers, its their fault. You don’t fix mistakes with more mistakes.

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I just received the email, and like many others was not happy about the way this was handled.

Those of us who already paid for the lifetime license should be grandfathered in.
I Know I would have been happy to donate to help support the developers,
But this type of thing; no way. I feel like I was lied to.

I really hope you rethink this.

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Here where the terms when I paid for my license. “To cover the ongoing hardware/software costs to develop, support and test MCEBuddy we have the PREMIUM ACCESS PROGRAM. Through this program you can access to the latest MCEBuddy builds and get support from the development team.”

You are reneging and nothing more than a scammer.

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Did the dev wake up and decide he wants to be the next Unity? Just admit the FUBAR and tell us you’re working on a better way of funding the app that preserves the rights of existing license holders.

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