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The Database Should Be Free
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Darren
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Joined: 11/07/2002 14:36:40
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Location: Hampshire, UK

PostPosted: Fri Mar 18, 2011 2:18 pm    Post subject: The Database Should Be Free Reply with quote

pocketgpsworld.comI saw a post on TechRadar UK blog today which discussed a particular bug-bear of ours so squarely on the nose that I felt compelled to post here.

Rarely does a day pass without an email from someone deriding us for charging for the speed camera database. Always along the lines of "you get the data for free from users so why are you charging for it, it should be free". Even those who thieve our database from pirate sites use this argument as a justification for their actions.

Some of you, unfamiliar with our history and the detail of what we do, will see the "it should be free" argument as a valid point. But even if the database was simply a regurgitated list of locations (which it isn't) then we would still have a right to charge for hosting and serving it.

But the fact is that we don't just sit here collecting your submissions and stuffing them into a spreadsheet. The true value is in the accuracy of the database, the fact that data is verified, corrected, compiled into an ever growing list of formats and published.

There are any number of free options out there, and all are riddled with errors, old cameras, duplicates etc etc. If you don't want to pay, then they are there for the taking. But they are free with good reason.

And what about all the data that is 'given' to us by our members? When we moved from free to charging some years back, we rewarded every member who had ever contributed data, be that one location or one hundred locations, with a lifetime membership. And we continue to reward those who contribute, with lifetime subscriptions for data that is accepted into the database.

We think that the way we operate is the best possible system. It rewards those who contribute and charges those who are happy just to have the data and use the service.

We all have bills and mortgages to pay and we work hard. I wouldn't expect anyone else to work for free and it's all rather galling when a small but increasingly vocal segment seem to think that anything internet or smartphone app related should be free. Why is our time any less worthy of recompense?

The original blog post can be read here. It puts across the point far better than I can and I urge you all to take a moment to read it.
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Xman
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 18, 2011 2:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Amen!
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mostdom
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Joined: Jul 10, 2006
Posts: 1964
Location: Surrey, UK.

PostPosted: Fri Mar 18, 2011 2:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Are we doing free cheese now? Free membership for being the first to spot cheese, may it be mobile cheese or fixed cheese. Not sure about variable cheese, but definatly no pCheese or temporary cheese. @pocketcheeseworld. om Laughing



...nice article, well put!
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Privateer
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Location: Oxfordshire, England, UK

PostPosted: Fri Mar 18, 2011 3:22 pm    Post subject: Re: The Database Should Be Free Reply with quote


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Last edited by Privateer on Fri Mar 18, 2011 8:16 pm; edited 1 time in total
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johnboy290
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Joined: Oct 28, 2003
Posts: 106
Location: Glasgow, Scotland

PostPosted: Fri Mar 18, 2011 7:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't use the database but I'd defend your right to charge for your time and resources. If people don't think there's value added by what you do then they should just go somewhere else! People do that all the time when they, by definition, shop around for stuff.
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Guivre46
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Joined: Apr 14, 2010
Posts: 1261
Location: West London

PostPosted: Fri Mar 18, 2011 8:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Precisely. This is a satnav community with linked commercial activities, it at least needs advertising to fund its existence. Commercially there are a number of safety camera databases which charge for their data. PGPSW has made a commercial decision to charge for very accurate information at a rate that compares very favourably with the competition. Some members happily provide information without any financial return , but we all benefit from the funding of the Forum and the excellent staff who look after it.
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lenfish
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Joined: Sep 30, 2009
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 18, 2011 10:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dom,

I'm afraid your idea concerning the cheese is full of holes. Very Happy

I suspect the people who expect "something for nothing" are the very same who wouldn't ever do anything for free in their own lives. Amazing how many people still don't live in the real world.

Regards,

Len (yet another "Grumpy Old Man")
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Andy_P
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Joined: Jun 04, 2005
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 18, 2011 10:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hey, PGPSW boss man... That "Work for Free" sign you've got looks just what I need.
Can you post it to me ASAP? (pref. first class, I'm a busy man).


Wink
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Darren
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Joined: 11/07/2002 14:36:40
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 18, 2011 11:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Andy_P wrote:
Hey, PGPSW boss man... That "Work for Free" sign you've got looks just what I need.
Can you post it to me ASAP? (pref. first class, I'm a busy man).

As I knocked it up in Photoshop and so own the rights I'd be happy to. But first I will need a signed purchase order from you or cash up front Wink
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253
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Joined: Mar 05, 2007
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Location: The green bit between the M40, M4 and M25.

PostPosted: Fri Mar 18, 2011 11:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm afraid the posts and 'reasoning' you get to see are just symptomatic of the freeloading society we have in the UK - and elsewhere.
Everyone seems to think they know their "rites" but none of them know their responsibilities, and don't even consider they have any.
Everythng is always some one elses responsibility. "Not my fault mate".

Easy for me to say, but ignore them, or better still, why not post a database to the pirate sites riddled with false and misleading data, and attribute it to some of the whingers.

Bob
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M8TJT
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 19, 2011 12:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

253 wrote:
why not post a database to the pirate sites riddled with false and misleading data, and attribute it to some of the whingers.
Because the other whingers would say tat our data was cr4p Sad
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Guivre46
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 19, 2011 12:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

How much will you give me to post a reply to this?
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Mike R [aka Wyvern46]
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M8TJT
The Other Tired Old Man
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 19, 2011 12:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

OOOOh. YES. Please do it for free
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The Rudd
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Joined: Apr 18, 2006
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Location: Newcastle upon Tyne

PostPosted: Sat Mar 19, 2011 7:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I can never understand how some people expect things to be free, as Darren said that all the data and submissions are verified by members (therefore accurate) as opposed to being possible.

For the price of a subscription you get a service and a good place to be and learn from the community of sat nav people.

Jerry
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Allan_whoops
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 19, 2011 9:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

What one is paying for is the fact that there is a site which hosts accurate data. I've never had a problem with you charging and moved from the free version to a subscription version. The people who complain about the charge will also be the first to scream about inaccurate data.
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