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ShootQ and Pictage... Worried

Today Pictage announced a price hike in their starter level from $19 to $29 a month. Although is just $10. As it stand right now, Pictage is the most expensive online proofing system with the worst customer service (this does not mean that is bad, but that compared to all the other alternatives is the worst).

For example, Smugmug is at least half the price of the Starter level and the sales fee is only 15% compared to 20% for Pictage. And SM offers 24 hrs 7 days a week support and typically, in a slow day, you get an answer within two hours.

But what bothers me is the explanation for the price increase. "To keep" non pro out! So, to keep non -pro out I have to pay more? 

Then, we are told that we are getting free album design... yeah but is not really free because to make an album through Pictage is more expensive. As a matter of fact, they few things they are adding are things that benefit them more than us.

I wondered (and I did ask them) why not better lower the 20% to a 15% or allow us the be able to use the free album design but use our own album company? Why not make sure that those using Pictage are really pro photographers? The response? those things are two subjective... and if you cannot pay $10 more a month you are basically... cheap. Hec, If I was paying $99 a month for Pictage I think I can pay $30, but I am just not willing to drink the kool aid.

So, How all these ties up with ShootQ? Because ShootQ belongs to Pictage. Because their reasoning shows the mindset of the company that owns ShootQ. And I do not like it. And I am concerned that a tool that I love and have built my business around (ShootQ) will be affected by the Pictage "Kool Aid" mentality. I am concerned to the point that for the very first time since 2008 and I am seriously entertaining the idea of checking what else is in the market. 

I hate to say it, but for the first time I regret the sale of ShootQ to Pictage. 

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