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A Message From Allen Cronce of PACE
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#1
19th June 2013
Old 19th June 2013
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A Message From Allen Cronce of PACE

Hello. This is Allen Cronce, President of PACE.

The past week has been one of the hardest weeks of my entire life. As I read through this thread, it honestly pains me that our mistakes have caused so much frustration and interrupted workflow. I haven’t been able to sleep and can barely eat. I know I should have addressed you all sooner, but I feel such shame for how this new launch has been executed, that I've been focusing our efforts on getting to a resolution, so you can all get back to work. I've never been in a situation like this and I realize our customer relations skills have been severely lacking. If you read on, you will see how I plan to change this.

I started PACE because I am passionate about technology. I know the amount of work that guys like Michael Carnes and Steven Slate go through to develop software products and I truly believe that these software products need to be protected from piracy. PACE has had a long run without many hiccups, which is something rare for any technology company.

That is why this past Monday I was shocked to see that the software that we at PACE have all been working on so hard for the past few years was launched with such unexpected technical errors… errors that have caused some users like you to be troubleshooting rather than working. I cannot tell you how upsetting that is to our entire team.

Even though its introduction has been rough, I am still very proud of the new iLok License Manager. The sole purpose of our new product is to make the iLok system better for you, the customer. We will get it working. We will make this right. We will prove to you that we are good people, honest people, with a good product that has the best intentions: to protect your investment and to protect the software industry's hard work.

Although our support team is working around the clock, I plan to improve our customer support so we can help you more effectively. We're going to update our website with more information and alert new users of the potential problems… something we should have done earlier. I was just optimistic that we'd have a solution earlier, but this was a mistake and I'm truly sorry.

We will continue to work with customers to solve issues they have had with the new iLok License Manager. We will maintain a presence here and post updates of our progress.

Once again, we realize we have let you down. The best thing we can do at this point is continue to focus our efforts on solving any outstanding problems to make sure our customers are up and running. You are going to see some big changes at PACE.

Allen Cronce
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TNM
#2
19th June 2013
Old 19th June 2013
  #2
TNM
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Hi Allen..welcome, sincerely. Unfortunately in my case I have already heavily investigated alternative products. I can't speak for anyone else of course, however some license transfer credits or in fact some free license transfers for everyone who DO now want to get out of using any ilok plugins that would have previously not done so is absolutely fair. The burn is too much for me.. As I said I have not been able to work on a single one of my 100+ compositions as they all use pace technology somewhere.

I do wish you all the very best and hope for your sake and for the plugin developer's sakes and mostly the users it is sorted out very soon, but yeah, I want out sorry, and don't really feel like paying for 79 transfers to do it. I think that's unfair in light of what's happened.

Regards
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#3
19th June 2013
Old 19th June 2013
  #3
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Thanks for reaching out.

I'd like to know if you'll be offering any sort of redress for this?

I'm still completely stuck with no working licenses other than some demos that I've managed to sync with mixed results. I've lost count of the hours wasted in utter futility. I've received a disrespectful email from a Pace staff member (and a follow up apology from another staff member) and I've still read no mention anywhere about the "no authorizations available" issue that I've been having.
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#4
19th June 2013
Old 19th June 2013
  #4
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Thanks Allan if you honestly feel this is over go grab a burger mate and get home to your family. Well chat tomorrow.
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#5
19th June 2013
Old 19th June 2013
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I know the amount of work that guys like Michael Carnes and Steven Slate (All Developers) go through to develop software products and I truly believe that these software products need to be protected from piracy
Mr. Cronce , I feel the same , the problem is as long as they are using Pace , after the fiasco your company has displayed the last 10 days , I will not be making any future purchases of their products .. Where have you been (for 10 days) , you have a website and chose not to warn others of the problems of your product ... It is a crime that hard working developers who choose to stand by you will suffer sales .. And what is the recourse for all those damaged by your actions ????? Suggestion : install a telephone , and an employee to answer it .... TOO LITTLE , WAY TOO LATE ..
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19th June 2013
Old 19th June 2013
  #6
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I'm sorry to hear about the issues, but I'm in the camp that will never buy a pace product either. I was forced to use it when I was on pro tools years ago, but never again. I was actually in the market for buying a high quality string sample this week and I simply avoided any ilok product because of these horror stories (I ended up bying vienna symphoy which is conveniently authorized on the cubase dongle
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CDW
#7
19th June 2013
Old 19th June 2013
  #7
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Quote:
I cannot tell you how upsetting that is to our entire team.

Even though its introduction has been rough, I am still very proud of the new iLok License Manager.
You're still very proud of this? Really?
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#8
19th June 2013
Old 19th June 2013
  #8
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Unhappy

Quote:
Originally Posted by iLoksupport View Post
Hello. This is Allen Cronce, President of PACE.

The past week has been one of the hardest weeks of my entire life. As I read through this thread, it honestly pains me that our mistakes have caused so much frustration and interrupted workflow. I haven’t been able to sleep and can barely eat. I know I should have addressed you all sooner, but I feel such shame for how this new launch has been executed, that I've been focusing our efforts on getting to a resolution, so you can all get back to work. I've never been in a situation like this and I realize our customer relations skills have been severely lacking. If you read on, you will see how I plan to change this.

I started PACE because I am passionate about technology. I know the amount of work that guys like Michael Carnes and Steven Slate go through to develop software products and I truly believe that these software products need to be protected from piracy. PACE has had a long run without many hiccups, which is something rare for any technology company.

That is why this past Monday I was shocked to see that the software that we at PACE have all been working on so hard for the past few years was launched with such unexpected technical errors… errors that have caused some users like you to be troubleshooting rather than working. I cannot tell you how upsetting that is to our entire team.

Even though its introduction has been rough, I am still very proud of the new iLok License Manager. The sole purpose of our new product is to make the iLok system better for you, the customer. We will get it working. We will make this right. We will prove to you that we are good people, honest people, with a good product that has the best intentions: to protect your investment and to protect the software industry's hard work.

Although our support team is working around the clock, I plan to improve our customer support so we can help you more effectively. We're going to update our website with more information and alert new users of the potential problems… something we should have done earlier. I was just optimistic that we'd have a solution earlier, but this was a mistake and I'm truly sorry.

We will continue to work with customers to solve issues they have had with the new iLok License Manager. We will maintain a presence here and post updates of our progress.

Once again, we realize we have let you down. The best thing we can do at this point is continue to focus our efforts on solving any outstanding problems to make sure our customers are up and running. You are going to see some big changes at PACE.

Allen Cronce
I fear the goal of this message is more to reassure the developers of their support than expressing a real concern towards the end users.
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#9
19th June 2013
Old 19th June 2013
  #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iLoksupport View Post
Hello. This is Allen Cronce, President of PACE.
Wow! It's great that someone from PACE finally had the guts to show his face around here. Up until now, not many of us had any idea who ran PACE. I salute you for your courage. I trust you won't find the responses too harsh, given what you may have already read in the original thread.

Quote:
Originally Posted by iLoksupport View Post
I've never been in a situation like this and I realize our customer relations skills have been severely lacking. If you read on, you will see how I plan to change this.
Do go on, sir.

Quote:
Originally Posted by iLoksupport View Post
That is why this past Monday I was shocked to see that the software that we at PACE have all been working on so hard for the past few years was launched with such unexpected technical errors…
Yeah, that's the thing about technical errors -- they're never expected. That's why things need to be tested extensively.

Quote:
Originally Posted by iLoksupport View Post
We will prove to you that we are good people, honest people, with a good product that has the best intentions: to protect your investment and to protect the software industry's hard work.
I don't doubt that you have good people with good intentions. The problem is that you don't seem to be aware of how a large software rollout should be done. At a minimum, you need a backout strategy that involves keeping your legacy system alive in case the new stuff doesn't work. It also involves keeping your users informed about what's going on.

Quote:
Originally Posted by iLoksupport View Post
We're going to update our website with more information and alert new users of the potential problems… something we should have done earlier.
Great! Although it would be nice if your website worked with Chrome and IE, which many people still use, fyi.

Quote:
Originally Posted by iLoksupport View Post
We will maintain a presence here and post updates of our progress.
Now this would be a welcome change. The lack of transparency is one of the most troubling things about this whole episode.

Quote:
Originally Posted by iLoksupport View Post
You are going to see some big changes at PACE.
Wait ... what? That's it? How about letting us know what changes you have in mind? Do they include having functional websites, having backup options, having a user-friendly support system, or maintaining clear communications with your user base? Look, for PACE to have any sort of credibility in the future, any "changes" will have to be sweeping and transformative. The next time PACE decides to roll out a new release, you'll need to inform all iLok users well in advance, have your prior system available in case of problems, augment your support staff with seasoned professionals, and have detailed rollback plans. Nothing less that a complete change of the way this rollout was handled will do.

I sincerely hope that the current mess can be cleaned up ASAP, for the sake of all the users that depend on your technology. I agree that iLok is a good system, or at least it was until 6/9/13 -- it just needs to be maintained in a professional and transparent manner. Is PACE up to the job? Some of us have our doubts. But good luck, nevertheless.

Cheers,
Eddie
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#10
19th June 2013
Old 19th June 2013
  #10
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I cannot tell you how upsetting that is to our entire team.

Even though its introduction has been rough, I am still very proud of the new iLok License Manager.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CDW View Post
You're still very proud of this? Really?
this is why the software is still up to download.
Instead of trying to fix it now, and hurting people's work, PACE should just revert everything back, and put more time in betatesting.
It wont happen though, i believe..
and the time goes on, people will lose more money, both users and devs.
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#11
19th June 2013
Old 19th June 2013
  #11
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This is pretty good damage control, Allan.
You are suffering hard and are a victim, too
( this may actually be the case ... I can not tell ... ).

This move will bring a number of sensitive and caring musicians back.
In real live, I also belong to this category.
But I lost sooo many days of my short live to Pace' f**k ups,
that I really hope many, better all, companies will turn away from Pace.


They say, everyone deserves a 2nd chance !
Sadly this desaster was *what* ... the 6th or 7th
...and Pace missed them all !

Enough is enough.

Two years ago, I predicted the next fiasco will come with the next big change.
Sadly I was right.
When this started with 3 days offline instead of 24hrs,
I predicted the new system will not run soothly, before 2 weeks.
Sadly I was right, again ( although I didn't see this monster-f.u.coming ).
Finally, I have absolutely no faith, that things will change in the future.

Jan
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#12
19th June 2013
Old 19th June 2013
  #12
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I realize, and I am sure Allen realizes, that this terrible situation will cause some customers to give up on ilok. This is a very unfortunate circumstance. However, I can attest to the fact that Allen and his team are indeed passionate about what they do, and in my contact with them this past week, they've been very emotionally distraught. Folks, they are humans. When I met with Allen last year, they showed me a preview of the new ilok manager and they were very excited about it. I think it is a huge upgrade from the previous browser based version. It is currently working on all of our machines.

I am optimistic that Allen will resolve the remaining technical issues shortly (I was told some major updates are rolling out now and the ILM is currently working on all our machines), and I hope that at least some of you can find it in your hearts to forgive.. although that may take some time and proof that PACE will indeed make this right for all those affected.

Cheers,
Steven
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#13
19th June 2013
Old 19th June 2013
  #13
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Here are some problems on my end.
First here is where I am coming from. I manage multiple ilok's multiple locations in pro studios and Venue consoles in live venues.
I make 100% of my bread & butter on everything working smoothly.
* A week to transfer a Pro tools license from one account to another - submitted a trouble ticket on Thursday - nothing was done until I sent e-mail to Andrew - he fixed it in 30 minutes.
* 7 Day Grace Period gone NO WARNING I am not perfect and I was signed into my ilok account instead of my clients sync'd his ilok to my account by mistake.
two weeks ago and for the last 10 years this was no big deal I can fix it myself.
Now this error cost a $100.00 to fix - sorry this is not fair.
* numerous licences stuck in my account and can't activate them.
* The world is moving towards web based apps and ilok is setting up a stand alone app. Moving off the web browser to this app is huge mistake from a user stand point.
* No more account history listing.
* No long getting email receipts for ilok CC charges - sorry my accounting dept needs these!!!
* I have spent over 40 hours on these issues and others in the last 8 days.
I want some free Zero Time for this hassle.
I need and depend on ilok.com to work.
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#14
19th June 2013
Old 19th June 2013
  #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by _dada_ View Post
This is pretty good damage control, Allan.
You are suffering hard and are a victim, too
( this may actually be the case ... I can not tell ... ).
This move will bring a number of sensitive and caring musicians back.
And Steven pushes on !

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steven Slate View Post
...in my contact with them this past week, they've been very emotionally distraught. Folks, they are humans.
But yes ... what else can he do ... he can not quit Pace ... they are so nice poeple ... and all the free iLoks ...

Sorry couldn't help !
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WKG
#15
19th June 2013
Old 19th June 2013
  #15
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Fortunately I was able to avoid the issues with the roll out of the new License Manager. I didn't need to make any changes so I decided to wait and carry on until I did. I have never had any issues with iLok to date and for me it's always been a very convenient solution. The new manager looks slick and will be a very nice improvement once the dust settles and functionality irons out.

That said I feel for the folks who got caught in the gears of this transition and would really like to hear what the issue was that took so long to get straightened out. I think it's a good thing Allen opened discussion here, it would not be an easy thing to do given the last week or so.

Perhaps we can find some solutions moving forward as well as some answers.
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#16
19th June 2013
Old 19th June 2013
  #16
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You all can claim that you are going to walk away from iLok, but that's naive. You have too many products that use it, and you aren't going to have much of a choice but to just wait it out.
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#17
19th June 2013
Old 19th June 2013
  #17
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Originally Posted by yeahimsteve View Post
You all can claim that you are going to walk away from iLok, but that's naive. You have too many products that use it, and you aren't going to have much of a choice but to just wait it out.
This is where I'm at. I rely on Pro Tools and can't realistically switch as a) most of the industry use it and expect me to hand over Pro Tools sessions and b) I'm used to it and haven't been able to find an alternative that I'm happy with (Logic, Reaper, Cubase, Nuendo, Fairlight...)
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#18
19th June 2013
Old 19th June 2013
  #18
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Mr. Cronce,

I have been tied to iloks since digidesign/avid decided to switch to you years ago. I did not choose your company...the developers I've chosen to base my business around did. Therefore, we are partners.

My family's livelihood depends on my studio to be up and running at all times. I am not a hobbyist. This new roll out has been nothing short of an EPIC FAIL. It is truly unacceptable for this to happen in this day and age. So many things were handled improperly. Who decided to flip the ON switch after being down for 72 hours on a 24 hour or less cut over? Why no warnings on the website? Why not roll back after 3,4, or 5 days? WHY NO CONTINGENCY PLAN?

Like I said, I'm stuck with you, and you with me, as long as the companies I have invested in continue to do business with you. I have invested a large fortune in my studio. When your site goes down, so do my 125+ licenses and my entire room full of outboard gear. I have to be honest, after this, I'm scared as hell to know my business relies on your company. PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE get it together for all of our sakes!
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iLoksupport
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#19
19th June 2013
Old 19th June 2013
  #19
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Hi all,

I wanted to add a quick post to let people know that a couple of hours ago we've completed a services update that should resolve many (but not all) of the issues reported. Performance is also dramatically improved, similar to the levels we saw during our 10 month beta and 3 weeks of staging.

There's nothing anyone has to do get this update. It was all on the services side, not on the ILM (iLok License Manager) application side.

Please be aware that there still are some pretty important issues that we plan to fix soon, including problems where some peoples' licenses are getting incorrectly "stuck" with zero activation counts. We're planing another server-only update tomorrow night that should address the most significant remaining problems.

I know that many of you have raised important points, including questions about how PACE can possibly make whole the people who have been affected by this release. I, and other people at PACE will follow up on this thread with more information.

At this stage, after having had almost no sleep for several days, I need to get some rest. I look forward to answering more questions shortly.

Best,

Allen Cronce
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#20
19th June 2013
Old 19th June 2013
  #20
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Downvote this if you want, but taking ELEVEN DAYS to address this publicly is completely inexcusable. Leaving end users in the dark is unconscionable, and you've probably caused irreparable harm to at least a few of your clients and their users. Simply being available to address concerns would have gone a long, long way toward furthering public trust. Too little, too late.
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#21
19th June 2013
Old 19th June 2013
  #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iLoksupport View Post
... We're going to update our website with more information and alert new users of the potential problems… something we should have done earlier...
Why the expletive is this mentioned in a letter addressing burnt users?

The actual action of putting up a big warning message on the website takes roughly the same time as writing that sentence! And then give or take up to half an hour to show to all users if you're using any caching for your web site.

Just the fact that you're stating this is something you're going to do instead of making sure the action is done before writing your statement tells how much of an actual change we're going to see compared to the level of damage control you're trying to achieve here.

I do know there's been a warning notice posted since you wrote your letter though, but as said by many, at least a week later than it actually should have.
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#22
19th June 2013
Old 19th June 2013
  #22
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I just went to ilok.com and it is clear that there is change happening and Allen and his team are showing more transparency and a willingness to get back on track. And while I agree it is coming later than it should have, I can relate to the fact that the optimism of getting a quick fix that would negate the need for such a warning can cloud judgement. Again.. I'm not trying to make excuses for them. But as a developer of technology products, I can understand.

On another note, things are working over here. The applied fixes are definitely having an effect.

Cheers,
Steven
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#23
19th June 2013
Old 19th June 2013
  #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iLoksupport View Post
Hello. This is Allen Cronce, President of PACE.

The past week has been one of the hardest weeks of my entire life.
Once again, we realize we have let you down. The best thing we can do at this point is continue to focus our efforts on solving any outstanding problems to make sure our customers are up and running. You are going to see some big changes at PACE.

Allen Cronce
Better late than never.

You have my respect Allen, this must be a nightmare for you.

Good luck, hope it all gets fully sorted asap.
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#24
19th June 2013
Old 19th June 2013
  #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steven Slate View Post
I just went to ilok.com and it is clear that there is change happening and Allen and his team are showing more transparency and a willingness to get back on track. And while I agree it is coming later than it should have, I can relate to the fact that the optimism of getting a quick fix that would negate the need for such a warning can cloud judgement. Again.. I'm not trying to make excuses for them. But as a developer of technology products, I can understand.

On another note, things are working over here. The applied fixes are definitely having an effect.

Cheers,
Steven
The distinction being you, as a pretty stand-up guy, would have been more than willing to address panicked users if something went completely batshit with one of your products. At the end of the day, this really is a discussion about character and crisis management.
#25
19th June 2013
Old 19th June 2013
  #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steven Slate View Post
I just went to ilok.com and it is clear that there is change happening and Allen and his team are showing more transparency and a willingness to get back on track. And while I agree it is coming later than it should have, I can relate to the fact that the optimism of getting a quick fix that would negate the need for such a warning can cloud judgement. Again.. I'm not trying to make excuses for them. But as a developer of technology products, I can understand.

On another note, things are working over here. The applied fixes are definitely having an effect.

Cheers,
Steven
I just have to tell you Steven that I own VCC, FG-X, Virtual Tape and Trigger. With a project due 3 weeks from now, I was looking forward to demoing and purchasing the Buss Comp for possible use. But now I am probably not going to do that. I will consistently be looking for alternatives to ilok and picking them as I purchase new software. I just don't feel comfortable risking my entire system. I hope you develop some new system for piracy prevention. If you do, I'll be back. The developers need to make some kind of stand here.
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#26
19th June 2013
Old 19th June 2013
  #26
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Hi Allen,

PM sent.

Regards,
Leon
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#27
19th June 2013
Old 19th June 2013
  #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iLoksupport View Post
...including questions about how PACE can possibly make whole the people who have been affected by this release. I, and other people at PACE will follow up on this thread with more information.

Allen Cronce
This is key to - in some way, repairing the damage.

If Pace got everything wrong so far, then when this situation abates they need to make proper redress. That would help significantly.

For a good few, It will take some time for the trauma of this event to be forgotten.

If we can see some positive results from this disaster - such as:

• Better, more open communication and accountability.

• Sympathetic and timely response to genuine honest users.

• Non punitive $100 'fines' for mistakes.

• An understanding that the 'Pace CP experience' had often, and to many customers felt almost vindictive - so Pace needs to be massively and demonstrably more customer-centric.

• Your REAL customers are the end user and not the developers.

The real end-user customers are simply wanting a hassle free experience with a company that understands their needs and that they can TALK to when those needs are not met.

So many musicians, engineers and producers are busting their balls trying to survive in a lean market and they don't need a cold-faceless-unsympathetic gatekeeper to add more stress to their lives.

If you guys at Pace show some heart and generosity to repair the damage after this is over - you never know you might actually be able to re-invent yourselves as a great 'go-to' company, rather than a 'have-to-phuggin' go-to one.

I'm an optimist...

You can do it.
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"There's no correlation between creativity and equipment ownership. None. Zilch. Nada." Hugh MacLeod

~ peace ~
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#28
19th June 2013
Old 19th June 2013
  #28
Lives for gear
 
scruffydog's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2005
Location: North London.UK
Posts: 1,743

scruffydog is offline
I would like it to be different..but it will effect sales in the short to medium term drastically.

We don't need much excuse not to by something..that is why Geaslutz exists anyway...to give us confidence in our shopping choices..

I am not even sure getting drunk will tempt me to press the 'buy now' button at this time...

6 months?..christmas sales?
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#29
19th June 2013
Old 19th June 2013
  #29
Lives for gear
 
Polarelch's Avatar
 
Joined: Nov 2006
Location: Berlin, Germany
Posts: 1,476

Polarelch is offline
First of all, thank you for coming here and having the courage to take this step. Yes, it should have been done a lot earlier, but nevertheless, you have my respect for this on a personal level. Also, on a personal level, I hope you and your company will get over these traumatic events, and I wish you all the best to recover, your own wellbeing and the company's reputation.

BUT

On a commercial / professional level, your message most likely won't keep me from avoiding iLok bound products in the future.

I'm not even a professional, I don't make any money with my music and my studio. However, I'm an artist and a private person who needs to justify his purchases as well, and base them on the trust that they will work smoothly.

Private persons can't afford it either, to pay for products that don't work or can't be used.

As said, your message gets my respect on a personal level, but it doesn't give me more trust in your company and in your product.

We all need to see actions following the words, and I'm sure you are aware of that.
Only a full and permanent recovery of your system and an ongoing smooth operation for users can save iLok's reputation, and it might take a long long time for the word to spread, and thus to get customers back that have been moving away already.

I'm on the verge.
If your message wouldn't have appeared today, I would have already taken the step to return my new Softube purchase back to the dealer. Now I'm waiting, and as said, on the verge to leave the boat.

I hope for you, the developers and especially my fellow customers, that everything will be fine soon.

Good luck to everyone.
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Gear: Analog Keys, JX3P, Nord Electro 3, Mopho Keyboard, Blofeld Keyboard (used as master keyboard only, not as synth), Machinedrum, Mono Lancet, DRM1 MK3, Spark LE, Volca Keys, TAL synths, ValhallaVintageVerb / ÜberMod, Overloud Springage, Fabfilter Pro-Q, Softube Mix Bundle + Trident A-Range, iZotope Ozone, Studio One V2, Faderport, Ableton Live 9, APC 40, Minimonsta, Oddity, U-He Diva, Komplete 9 Ultimate, RME Fireface 400, Zoom R16, Neumann KH 120 A
#30
19th June 2013
Old 19th June 2013
  #30
Lives for gear
 
kaboom75's Avatar
 
Joined: Sep 2011
Location: UK
Posts: 601

kaboom75 is offline
This is the first mess up of ilok in two years for me so it's been far more reliable than my old computer running Windows XP. I dodged this bullet because I know big changes always cause problems. The way to mend the reputation is to provide a backup solution.
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