January 28, 2023

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Technology Room

Fogbugz goes darkish | Profitable Software program

4 min read

At the moment I obtained an electronic mail titled ‘Your Manuscript Account Steadiness’ which stated:

Your Manuscript account is now in arrears within the quantity of $31.25.

Use this hyperlink to specify a bank card to your account and we are going to use it to settle your stability:

https://****.fogbugz.com/default.asp?pg=pgEditCC

You possibly can prepay for a yr upfront utilizing a examine, company buy order, or bank card:

https://store.fogbugz.com/FogBugz/?sCategory=prepayfb&nUsers=0&ixOrderCoveredBySupport=*****

Thanks,

FogBugz Buyer Success
[email protected]

Fogbugz was a web based bugtracker developed by the a lot revered Fog Creek Software program. They offered it some years in the past when their firm headed off into the stratosphere (Stackoverflow, Trello and many others). I believe I may need had a free Fogbugz account 10+ years in the past. I requested round on Twitter and fairly a number of individuals appear to have obtained the very same electronic mail. It seems that:

  • The venerable FogBugz software was just lately offered on to https://ignitetech.com and they look like attempting to demand cash from anybody who ever used FogBugz. Which is more likely to be 1000’s of individuals.
  • IgniteTech describe themselves as “The place software program goes to dwell”, however “The place software program goes to die” is perhaps a greater description.
  • FogBugz was renamed to ‘Manuscript’ in some unspecified time in the future.

I attempted replying to the e-mail, telling them in no unsure phrases that they weren’t going to get a penny from me. That is the reply I obtained:

Hello, 

In an effort to supply a greater expertise to our current prospects, we're consolidating our electronic mail help channel into our Assist-Middle. 

In case you want technical help for FogBugz it is possible for you to to submit a case from our 'FogBugz Help Web page'. 

Replies made to this mailbox are routed to an unmanaged mailbox. 

Please don't reply to this message. 

Thanks, FogBugz Help Crew

It’s unhappy to see somebody utilizing darkish enterprise practices to attempt to wring a couple of pennies from the corpse of a as soon as much-respected product. Does Joel Spolsky know? I don’t suppose he’d be impressed.

** Replace 24-Sep-2022 **

I obtained this electronic mail late on the twenty second:

Pricey FogBugz Person,

Mea culpa — sincerely.

We’ve develop into effectively conscious of the maelstrom of concern and feedback attributable to a collection of emails that a few of you obtained, however to clarify, we have been simply as stunned as you when a number of emails have been despatched. Our unique and solely meant electronic mail, which was managed by people, was to tell you that the “free,” non-expiring model of FogBugz is being phased out on October 17, 2022. Moreover, we wished to give you the choice to proceed utilizing FogBugz by updating your account to a paid subscription. This was all the, deliberate effort.

Nonetheless, as soon as we up to date the accounts that had been recognized as free and non-expiring within the inside FogBugz accounting system, the software program robotically generated a type electronic mail, notifying you that we had summarily transformed you to a paid account, and worse, really triggering assortment/dunning notices to some. This was unintended and isn't correct. Sure, we’ve owned the software program for a while and may know the entire nooks and crannies by now. We don’t know if this was a nook or a cranny, nevertheless it determined to behave by itself. Fact. It’s embarrassing, and we’d react the identical means as lots of you may have. So this electronic mail is to set the file straight.

We don't robotically cost any buyer for utilization of the software program except a subscription has been expressly elected, regardless of what the misguided auto-email said.

Right here’s what it is advisable know:

    All free subscriptions for FogBugz will expire on Oct. 17, 2022. In case your FogBugz subscription has already expired, and you don't want to proceed utilizing FogBugz, you don’t must take any additional motion. Your knowledge can be deleted from the system; you'll not be billed and you'll obtain no additional emails from both the nook or the cranny.

    When you have been erroneously charged as a result of your free account nonetheless had your bank card on file (e.g. some customers have been on paid accounts and had downgraded), we are going to guarantee that you're promptly refunded. Please use the e-mail [email protected] when you have not seen the refund already posted.

    Regardless of this mishap, we hope the advantages of the software program will encourage you to proceed. In case your FogBugz free-account subscription is presently energetic, and also you want to proceed as a subscriber, please authorize your paid subscription by following these directions.

    Please be aware: Once you improve, your account will qualify for 50% off any subscription tier.

    When you want any help whereas upgrading, please contact us at  help.fogbugz.com.

We sincerely apologize for the confusion that was brought about and are working onerous behind the scenes to resolve all points associated to this motion.

Sincerely,

The (humbled) FogBugz Crew

So Fogbugz turned sentient and began demanding cash? And this primary occurred at least a week ago, however the brand new house owners didn’t discover and a complete load of emails went out days later (together with the one I obtained a number of days after the primary publish on HN)? Hmm.

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