I’ve been a user and believer in Movable Type for almost two years now, it’s been a wonderful product that has let me, and many others, make our own homes on the web. We’ve all been patiently waiting for Version 3, the ‘professional’ version, of MT that has been a long time promised. Part of that promise was that MT 3 would be available in a free version.
Movable Type 3 was released today and what should have been a cause for great excitement in the blogging world has left many people angry and confused. The free version of Movable Type is there, but it’s not what any of us were expecting. You are now only allowed one, and only one, author and that author can run at the maximum 3 blogs. There’s no new features of any great worth, and the one that Six Apart, the makers of Movable Type, are promoting is merely a commentors white list. Unlike Typepad there is no photo functionality and no lists in version 3, regardless of whether you choose the paid or free version.
I currently run 5 blogs off my install and if Rae, Marita, Trish and Jen are to keep their blogs I would have to purchase a Movable Type 3.0 Personal Edition Volume License I and that will set me back a fee of USD$119. And that’s too much for me.
Six Apart have to make a living; no one can deny them that but the prices for licenses and their licensing agreements will not be affordable for most of the people who have used MT in the past. I can’t believe that a company so savy in it’s product developement could make sucha a monumental business bludner and blow away every bit of good will it had built up in one stupid blow. It’s rather telling that they have removed the word ‘personal’ from their description of Movable Type as a ‘Personal Publishing System’. The price seems especially high when you take a look at several competitors, such as WordPress, Textpattern or even Melbourne’s own Mambo Open Source – all of which are available for free.
I know I don’t have to upgrade but over time the feature list of MT 2.6x will shrink in comparison to what others have to offer, vulnerabilities will be exposed and development of plug ins will focus on the later versions, leaving us with an underpowered, outdated and feeble application.
Movable Type has made it’s move, unfortunately I think many people, myself included, will simply watch it go.