As many of you know, I am the first one to ferret out a cheap copy of FileMaker 7. I like a deal and many have been offered on the Net of late. Well, apparently, many of these resellers with unbelievably low prices are selling illegitimate copies.
There have always been spammers out there selling software at ridiculously low prices and I ignored them. But I was taken in by these CD-Only resellers who were operating so openly with Google ads and telling stories that they buy in very large volume, etc.. I wanted to believe these were legit deals and encouraged my readers to check them out.
I was wrong. I just recently received a FileMaker Solutions Alliance mailing from FileMaker Inc. informing members about the problem. FileMaker says they only sell full versions of FileMaker to resellers, not CD-Only versions. Even when the CD artwork looks authentic, it may be a well-done counterfeit.
As a supporter and fan of FileMaker Inc. and as a developer of FileMaker applications, I can’t and won’t knowingly support any reseller who is operating outside legal bounds when it comes to this issue. I want FileMaker to keep getting better and I want excellent support. Each of those things depends on minimizing this kind of counterfeiting and other kinds of piracy.
Since I don’t have the time to adequately research the various special offers for FileMaker on the Net, I won’t be flagging these kinds of things in the future. From now on, I’ll be careful to only make recommendations on sure thing legit FileMaker deals.
2 replies on “Cheap FileMaker 7 Resellers Breaking the Rules”
This is still going on to this day. What I have found is that if a dealer makes claims about why their product is legitimate, it most definitely is not. Examples of this are dealers who justify CD-Only products as if they were “retail pulls from damaged boxes,” or part of a “manufacturer clearance sale.” Another lie is dealers who claim to “check inventory regularly for legitimacy.” This last statement is absolutely true, as these dealers have little or no inventory. In reality, these Google Ad / NexTag / Pricewatch / PriceGrabber dealers use their website as a front to forward your order over to another reseller, located who knows where, who send you a counterfeit copy.
The best way to avoid these pitfalls is to understand licensing agreements, how software is legally distributed, and buy from a reputable source. Don’t buy from U.S. dealers who don’t show up in or rate poorly in the Better Business Bureau website (bbb.org). On-line rating systems cannot be trusted as even if the end-user really did buy software from a dealer, they probably don’t know that they received a counterfeit product.
The most obvious indicator is price. A full copy of FileMaker 8 should cost between $240-$290. A paper license to use the software costs $220-$250. There is simply no way for a software reseller to make any money buying wholesale copies and reselling them for less than that. Ask yourself, why would a reseller buy a product wholesale for $150 and then turn around and sell them for $139.99?
Also, don’t be afraid to query the manufacturer about the legitimacy of an advetised product. Software companies are very savvy about their own products. I asked a big-box company about a dealer’s advertisement to which they replied that the company may or may not carry legitimate copies but they are definitely under investigation by the SIIA.
There is simply no way for a software reseller to make any money buying wholesale copies and reselling them for less…great lens will credit this and save…