Screw those guys. They suck. Big middle finger from right outside the fences of Syed Balkhi’s multi-million dollar estate.
They’re the WordPress equivalent of Google. A giant conglomerate gobbling up any and all competition and innovation in the market space. I can’t remember a time when I didn’t cringe when hearing about a beloved company selling out to Awesome Motive.
While they do serve many (happy) paying users…I don’t think they’re good for the industry. At least not in spirit.
What’s the crime here?
The spirit of open-source is innovation and problem-solving.
2 principles I feel AM couldn’t be any further from. As much involved as AM is in the open-source WordPress space, I feel they couldn’t possibly be any further from these core principles.
They aren’t innovating shit.
That’s something more commonly done by lone programmers or business owners with a unique problem they have to solve on their own…for their OWN needs. AM isn’t a lone programmer or business owner, they’re just a copycat business ripping off competitor ideas or buying out companies outright. (A more successful version of WPMU DEV, a notorious “me too” conglomerate in WordPress history.)
They aren’t solving problems.
Well…not unless you’re counting “making money” as a problem to be solved. Cuz that’s they only problem they seem to be solving to me. They acquire businesses (rather than building them these days) and then immediately go…hmmmm, how can we maximize profits here? Plain as day to see.
- The only problems AM owners/shareholders are solving are – “how to make more money?”
- The only problems AM managers/employees are solving are – “how to keep my job?”
Their business practices seem awfully predatory at worst, and annoying at best. Their products all have the same-y mediocre vibe. Giving you just enough to justify the price tag. No more, no less. With their pocket size, they can easily copy away any competitor’s innovation advantage. Then using every plugin under their umbrella to cross-sell and nag you to death. (Because profit beats user experience, right?!)
Oh, and don’t get me started on that silly WPBeginner site either (their core lead engine for plugin sales). It’s like your average magazine off the newsstand…50% ads, and 50% advertorials. So basically…100% ads and very little content. It was the pioneer annoying affiliate-marketing site of its time.
Should we burn Awesome Motive to the ground?
Of course not.
As much as many of us hate McDonald’s, Starbucks, Amazon, and other similar American capitalist-style conglomerates…there are many who like them.
By all means, if you don’t mind paying the premium pricing for that “corporate polish” and bureaucracy as opposed for actual product value….then go ahead.
In the meanwhile, I’ll keep saying what I feel. That AM lacks soul. Prioritizes profits over true product value. And any product under their umbrella becomes an investment, not an innovation.
They are after all, a company and not a person. *And they care as much about you as McDonalds does.*
- Anybody else clapping for and re-sharing Syed Balkhi’s “entrepreneur success stories”…I sincerely hope he buys out your favorite plugins and jacks up their subscription price on you.
- Personal note to Syed…because I just know somehow, all product owners end up reading everything I say about them. “No personal hate towards you, dude. I’m happy for you. That you got to achieve things you wanted in life. Also that you gave back via philanthropy. I’m just not a fan of your business. That’s all.”
Agreed. The last thing that annoyed me is when they took a simple plugin like “Insert Headers and Footers” and bloated it, transforming it into WPCode. At the time, when they released it, I checked the sizes.
Version 1.6.2 – 13.8 KB
Version 2.0.0 – 507 KB
I even wrote a review foreseeing a pro version for a few $ per month. And voila, the cheapest plan is $49/month. Hilarious.
Yeaup, their rinse and repeat routine can be seen from a mile away. Good call!
Unfortunately, as you already know, this happens in many markets. Those with “big bucks” wait until entrepreneurs or small companies develop and release new technology or products before buying them out, marketing them as “best in class”, and raising product price — all while making more “big bucks.” This interesting phenomenon is called “Capitalism.”
We support your frustration, but for many entrepreneurs and small companies, getting bought out by a conglomerate or corporation is a dream come true since it’s a easy way for them to grab and own some of those “big bucks” — and retire comfortably.
But wait, the above is not so bad after all. We truly believe there’s always an opportunity to leverage off those capitalistic moves. With your awesome skills (no pun intended), all you have to do is market your services to Awesome Motive and grab a piece of the pie.
Currently, they’re looking for great developers like you, so there’s your big opportunity.
(Caution: If they offer you USD 2 Million to retain your services, please don’t sign the deal. Doing so will violate the principle behind your blog topic. Catch our point?)
Cheers, amigo. We appreciate you, your transparency, and your services. Salud!
Thanks for the comment. Yeah…that’s where we’re at nowadays. Where you can just cash out. Take off in your golden parachute while your user-base is left with a tyrant. Everyone’s free to do as they please.
They are the EIG of plugins. They just screw every plugin they buy. Duplicator was one of the finest and most respected products in this market. They bought it and transform it in an awful nag screen nightmare. Not only you get nag screens for the pro version at every single step of the plugin’s process but you get there at your dashboard homescreen!
I absolutely hated what Duplicator has become. With all the money Syed has, all these articles of his so-called entrepreneurial success, and yet his plugin still begs for more in every step of its UX. It’s disgusting. So much for “success”, right?
I read the headline “Awesome Motive” three times till I flashback in my mind.
The only product I use from them is “SearchWP” I wish there better alternative.
last released by them, “wpcode” Kinda copied from WPCodeBox.
Kareem, I’m a bit late to the party, but have you tried Relevanssi Search?
Imho it has better search features than searchWP, has no annoying nags and cross sells, no flashy ui dashboard, great extensibility and awesome Support. And it is still maintained by the original dev, Mikko Saari.
I’m a happy customer of the plugin and if we don’t want to leave the wp ecosystem to the big corporations we need to support devs like Mikko.
AMEN!!! I’ve been using Mikko’s Relevanssi since 10 years ago and absolutely love it. He’s provided great service. His help allowed me to do so much with my site.
Thx for the reply and the info, Well, I would love to set Relevanssi as a default search for the websites I use now and later on.
But the cons of it “Relevanssi can’t search content that is stored outside the wp_posts database”
SeachWP does this out of the box and makes things easier, that is the only reason I’m in.
I know it is possible to do this with Relevanssi but requires PHP work, I can do it but always require manual work for each website needed.
And when you add to that the constant repetition of articles about how their plugins are the best in their category, it’s nauseating.. Ps: with the Duplicator plugin they took my breath away. I’m dreading what they’re going to do with it..
I hate mainstreamed WPForms, AIOSEO and all products of Awesome Motive! Huge antipathy.
I currently work for a company which was recently acquired, we were all but dead in the water TBH and without AM, myself and my co-workers wouldn’t have a job for much longer. Not to mention the product would likely have been abandoned affecting a lot of customer’s also.
So, while I don’t want to argue with your frustrations, at the end of the day a business that isn’t making money, isn’t in business for very long. I’m grateful Syed has kept our product alive.
Oh yes, I never forgot about that angle. Syed helps out when it makes sen$e. It’s not like he’s some kind of benevolent superhero look to save ALL dying businesses and their would-be abandoned users.
The win-win-win doesn’t look so altruistic from where I’m standing. Glad that the arrangement worked out for you, the worker.
I’m going to be blunt here for your own good. To me this sounds like sour grapes bro, this post oozes of “I feel like I’m a mediocre player wishing I could be Syed but I don’t think I can so I’ll try to tear him down.” It also sounds like you have a lack of knowledge and visibility into how a successful business operates, what it takes to fund innovation and really what actual innovation looks like. I think instead of spending time talking shit you should get off your ass and figure out why Syed’s in the position he’s in and maybe learn from his approach. Syed is raising the standard for all businesses in the WordPress ecosystem and you can either up your game or get out of the way.
Not taking any of your corporate-simping seriously. 😂😂
By all means, defend your hero and make your money exploiting markets if you want. But don’t come around crying as a “concerned friend” when you get called out for it. Peace! ✌️
– Unconcerned Stranger
“raising the standard” 😭😭😭
Is this for April’s fool day?