The CDRLabs thread is closed. So I’ll reply here.
I don’t think that donationware is the correct name. True donationware is one where people donate out of the kindness of their own hearts because they love the software so much. Not because there is an “I’ll remove the ads and give you a registration key if you ‘donate’ this much” incentive. That’s twisting the meaning of “donation.” Also, true donationware is where the author gets compensation when someone appreciates the program and donates. But with the ads there, the author will reap a profit from the ads even if nobody liked the program and didn’t donate a cent. This is not donationware because a user “contributes” even without donating.
NicW said in the CDRLabs thread that he needs this money in order to support the high costs of the program in terms of drives and media. Someone else in that thread then made a point (that Nic never responded to) that some of the features in DVDInfoPro are official jobs and that Nic gets a number of free drives and free media (I was lurking in the forum when back in April Nic got a free 832S complete with 3 pieces of the very rare +R DL media… and when the 1213S came out, there was a thread announcing Nic getting the 1213S. And I remember reading that he got a free 411S, too… who knows what else he got?). Nic claims that he used a lot of media for DVDInfoPro, but as someone pointed out in the CDRLabs thread, it doesn’t make any sense because DVDInfoPro doesn’t burn media and that all he needs is a few burned discs to make sure that error scanning working right, a few RW to make sure that RW erasing is working, and a few blank recordables to make sure that the drive is sending the correct “CDB” command to the drive to tell the drive that the drive should booktype. None of this should take a lot of media, I don’t think. Also, Nic says that the donation also compensates for his time. But isn’t that what makes the difference between a job and a hobby? A job is when you get paid for your time and a hobby is not. I think that if Nic wants to say that his donations compensate for his time spent, then donationware is a very poor choice of words in my opinion! It is not volunteer work or some kind of community service if you get paid for the time–compensation for raw resources is one thing (which, apparently, the companies are already doing for him), but compensation for time is something else.
Other poeple like
are true examples, I think, of people who should really deserve donations. They’ve all purchased a lot of drives with their own hard-earned money for testing (some of OC’s drives came free, but according to his post listing all his drives, the vast majority came from his own pocketbook) and they’ve also all expended a lot of media for testing (especially
and his mountains of contributions to the media tests forum! ). And not to mention, this takes up a lot of their time, too! And they don’t even go around soliciting donations. Well, if anyone should, it’s them!
In my personal opinion, calling DVDInfoPro “donationware” or even any form of “freeware” is very misleading and offensive, because it insults the very concept of someone putting in their time and effort for the good of the community and not for the good of their pocketbook. DVDInfoPro is commercial software and should be labeled as such.