Movable Type 3

Movable Type 3 Developer Edition is out.

Stirred quite a controversy and lots of anger, huh…

While I think it’s perfectly reasonable that a company start trying to make some serious money off their product (gotta pay Mie after all :)) I think what most people are complaining about, is the steep pricing mechanism: of course there still is a free version, but if (like so many) you happen to have more than one author and/or more than three blogs on your site, the first price comes to $70 and goes very quickly up with each new blog/author.

Problem is, for as much as I like MT and appreciate the work that’s been put into it, $70 is, both psychologically and in regards to the competition, too high to justify such an investment. I mean, MT is a fine product, but let’s face it, most of its core could be coded (better and faster) by one or two people in less than a week (granted: with an interface nowhere near as polished). The only feature that really makes it stand apart is its flawless handling of multiple blogs/authors and good support of web standard technologies (xml, atom, xml-rpc etc). If you remove the former from the free bundle, it doesn’t hold a candle to some other free solution out there.

Further more, I personally think (and seem to be one of many), that a revamped commenting system is a tad light as the only prominent feature in a major update. It makes it hard to justify an upgrade.

To conclude, it might be more realistic and in tune with the market to offer a personal use license for under $30 that covers up to a dozen blogs/authors, while charging “real” commercial prices for corporate use. As for me, I think I will stick with this version for a while and might consider switching to WordPress in the future: its architecture is definitely nicer, and the fact it is open-source and written in PHP makes it infinitely more appealing to my inner-geek (plus the moral bonus of being able to contribute by coding)…

5 comments

  1. WordPress can support multiple blogs, albeit not off a single UI. It also supports all the standards you mentioned.
    I have a howto on my blog to help you move, if you want to, it’s really simple, and probably worth a shot, too 🙂

  2. True. I’ve seen a few pages describing the process around. Although I must say this is nowhere near what I would call “support” for multiple blogs. This is still a hack. Better than nothing, but still not as nice as MT seamless handling of this.

  3. Hi Dr Dave!
    Been a while. Glad to see you are out and about 🙂
    Yeah, we’re sifting through emails and are listening to all the feedback. I won’t say much since I don’t wanna seem like a pr person, but we are still working on the license structure. As someone noted elsewhere, it’s like we’ve hit adolescence and don’t we all remember that awkward stage of growth? Hopefully we’ll mature elegantly.

    Anyhow, just wanted to say a personal “hi” to you. That video you took of me dancing while moblogging is still my favorite!

  4. Hi Mie!

    Yea, I really like that video too…

    Regarding MT 3, as I pointed out in my entry, I think a lot of the reactions from people outraged at the thought of paying *any* money for MT do not have ground, but the pricing might still require some tuning to take in account the need of people and the realities of the market. From what I have seen, MT has already started revising their policy based on the feedbacks they received: I can only command their willingness to listen to their users (this is not something as common as one would expect in the world of software companies).
    As I also said, my hypothetical decision to switch at one point would essentially be based on technical criteria (PHP vs. CGI), not the license policy. But for now, I’m fully satisfied with the current version…

    Anyway, ‘hope you are enjoying your life in SF and maybe I’ll see you some time, there or here!

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