RE: 3.0 is coming

Randy Martin ( )
Fri, 21 Mar 1997 18:08:30 -0600

We purchased about 14 months ago. I think it was still at 1.92
then. The ONLY reason we purchased your product instead of someone elses is
because you had an unlimited user version that was reasonably priced. We
are approaching 700 mailboxes now and project that we will need upwards of
2000 by this time next year. I can't really justify paying for more user
licenses when I purchased an unlimited-user version initially. I don't
think it's very ethical on your part to sell me an unlimited-user version
of the software, and then tell say, "well, it wasn't really an
unlimited-user version. We just told you that so you would buy it. Now,
these are the actual prices." Sounds like a bait-and-switch technique that
I would expect from a used car salesman!

The rest of my comments are interspersed throughout your email.

At 09:56 PM 3/20/97 -0500, you wrote:
>I'd like to thank all of you for your responses...I know that pricing
>changes affect your business plans as well as ours...we grandfathered our
>customers who bought 1.93, as they moved to 2.0 (I think), but we're faced
>with heavy development costs and need to move on, as I'm sure you can
>understand...we try to price our products fairly, provide good support, and
>take feedback from our customers.
>We're always evaluating how we sell products...we'd like to continue to
>offer blocks of user mailboxes in quantities that make sense for both of
>us...need to add 50 users...okay. But it's cheaper for you, and for us, to
>add 500 at a time...transaction costs are the same for either quantity, and
>you'll need those additional users in 3 months anyway.
>Because of the Krazy Market (tm) we're all in, we can't predict what the
>competitive landscape will be tomorrow...we *can't* tell you how we'll
>price future products cos its too early for anyone to be thinking too hard
>about that.
>We try to build good products, provide good support, and do what's right.
>One or a couple of you suggested that you've had problems with
>support...overall our support gets high reviews, but as we all know,
>support is a thankless job (Been There, Done That!). It sucks no matter how
>well you do it...can't keep *everyone* happy...if we *can* help out we do.
>If you don't get a satisfactory response on something, escalate it or
>contact me.

If you guys are honest, you will admit that it costs you no more to sell me
a 50-user license product than it does an unlimited-user product as long as
I don't use you for support! It's the support for the 20,000-user guy that
costs you all the money. So, you should just charge for the support. I
don't need any support, I don't want any support, I can manage just fine on
my own. Why should I be penalized because someone who wants to maintain a
20,000-mailbox system need constant handholding? You guys are going to
alienate A LOT of users with this current pricing scheme.

I can no longer, in good conscious, recommend that anyone buy
Why should they pay $995 for a 500-user version of your product when they
can pay $765 to Ipswitch and get IMail with unlimited mailboxes, list
server, mail-to-fax, mail-to-alphapager, and a complete Web Interface to

You have been promising us a list server for over a year! Where is it?
Where's the other enhancements to the mail system? I can't really say that
you are doing a very good job providing support in the form of new and
improved capabilities.

>I'm on this list cos I want to understand what you all are saying about
>your messaging strategy...if I didn't care I'd be taking golf lessons :)

If you stay with this pricing scheme, you'll have plenty of time to play golf!

>With regard to sendmail and unsupported product...we've chosen to take the
>high road on this one...if you want a cheap product (pricewise), it's hard
>to beat sendmail. If you want a server that is easy to install, is
>reliable, supported, and will be upgraded as standards develop, sendmail
>ain't it. I'm not saying that we're the only game in town...just that if
>you don't want to spend all your time hacking your mail server, you ought
>to buy *somebody's commercial product.

We can buy plenty of commercial products that have more features than And most are MUCH faster. You know that you are ranked right
at the bottom of the list as far as speed is concerned, don't you?

>With regard to the Spam filter...I understand the pain you all are feeling.
>For fun I run a couple of mailing lists and am pretty active in the
>internet community...spam is something we all have to deal with on a daily
>basis. I wish I could fix that one Right Now. But we have to fix it so it
>stays fixed...and I assure you that our best dev guys are working on it.
>Again, I want to thank you all for sharing your thoughts...I joined this
>list a week or so ago, and will be around if you want to talk further
>either on the list or privately...
> ----------------------------------------------------------
> NTISP Mailing List

Again, I'm really disappointed with the new direction of I
will definitely be evaluating other mail servers to replace yours.

A very disheartened customer,

Randy Martin Voice: (512) 335-2368
Partner URL:
Austin Internet Access email: