1. Adopt the Reaper license model.
Make Ardour payware but keep the trial version uncrippled and unexpiring.
Thus the nagging screen on upstart and not only with export.
Reaper’s model works only because of the size of the total Windows user base. Applying its model to OS X is tricky, and applying it to Linux is more or less impossible.
You are also missing that fact that the “trial version” of Ardour is not the only way to get Ardour for free, just the most convenient. I am also very opposed to startuup nagscreens. If revenues drop, then its an idea I could consider.
2. Add an Ardour Marketplace on the site and charge commission or advertising revenue.
This ought not to be difficult with a with all the ecommerce programs that support digital download purchases.
To make this easier for the Ardour team post a big disclaimer that support for these comes from the developer and Ardour.
I am not a fan of advertising-driven plans. Furthermore, there are actually NOT a lot of ecommerce programs that support digital download purchases in a way that integrates even remotely with our existing system. In fact, there are precisely none. There have no been precisely zero inquiries from companies during Ardour’s existence about the possibility of joint marketing.
3. Sell a yearly made with Ardour CD as a digital download.
In case you hadn’t noticed, CDs are over Have you seen any other DAW that offers such a thing? I really don’t want to be put in a position of having to qualitatively judge what people do with Ardour - the truth is that most of it isn’t going to end up on anything that is sold for any notable amount of money. Most - not all! But curating such a thing is a lot of work in and of itself, and I simply don’t see the benefits as being worth the effort.
4. Only support the major Linux distributions to save development time.
Linux distributions cost us almost nothing in terms of development time. They do have a little impact on support “costs”, and my increasing response to this is to simply say “We/I do not support the Ubuntu packages of Ardour”. It doesn’t help much to “support the major Linux distributions” when its the same major distributions that screw around with our software and break it.
5. Give prospective hardware manufacturers advertising space or marketplace presence and gain advertising revenue or sales commission.
ardour.org uses google adsense already. I do not want more intrusive advertising.
6. I might make an very misinformed statement here, but change the license agreement to that one where you are free to download and change the source code BUT you are required to submit these code for possible integration into Ardour after review.
This would be a violation of the GPL that we rely on to be able to utilize the contributions, ideas and work of the developers of various libraries that we use, as well inviting our own developers to participate in Ardour’s development. I have no reason to believe that people re-distributing modified versions of Ardour’s code is an issue in our revenue situation. Love to hear it if I’m wrong!
7. Approach some online retailers that might give subscribers some special offers or benefits.
All online retailers want a percentage of the revenue. The size of the Linux user base is so small that I have absolutely no reason to believe that this is of any use for that platform. For OS X, its hard to say, but I have not come across any online retailers that I would be interested in partnering with.
There are other efforts underway to try to increase the revenue flow from Ardour, primarily by distributing our own universal “bundle” for Linux platforms. There are still some technical issues to overcome.
Thanks for your ideas. I remain committed to the belief that the best way to increase revenue from Ardour is to continue working on making it into such a totally awesome program that the user community grows dramatically. That is real work, but its based on adding real value to users (existing and potential) and not on marketing tricks and gimmicks.
It is important to realize that more or less all music/audio technology companies continue to struggle with revenue. This is a very small, very specialized and very, very competitive marketplace. Cockos (Reaper), Abelton and a few others have found a way to generate fairly respectable revenues, methods which may or may not last. Companies like Steinberg, who make some fine products, more or less went bankrupt before being bought out. I don’t know if you’re imagining that there is a huge world of potential customers out there waiting to pay for Ardour, but I’m fairly certain that at least until/if we provide a Windows version, this is a misconception of the niche that we’re in.