April 19, 2013

Survey: What do you think of Creative Cloud?

From your lips to the Adobe brass’s ears. (And yes, there’s a sort of cheesy “push” aspect to the early set of questions, but there are legitimate questions and a free-text entry field at the end.) Thanks for your help!

[Update: I’m sorry that I didn’t read through the whole survey before posting it, and sorry that it comes off as self-promotion masquerading as a real invitation to dialog. I believe that the creators’ intentions were good, and that people really will listen to the answers you supply.]

Posted by John Nack at 9:23 AM on April 19, 2013

Comments

  • takimata — 9:43 AM on April 19, 2013

    Yes, I will admit that I do not think very positive about the Creative Cloud offering. But, wow, in all seriousness, this is not a survey. It is a form
    asking you how and where exactly to get a sales pitch slapped in your face.

    [You’re right, and I’m sorry about that. I wish I’d gone through the whole thing before posting it. –J.]

    • Rob — 12:02 PM on April 19, 2013

      Adobe has broken the circle of trust?

      [Will you be reporting us to the TSA? –J.]

      • Jane Harrison — 6:00 AM on April 20, 2013

        Be careful what you ask for John – the TSA is always looking for new areas to expand into. The ‘probing’ questions in this survey are a sign of things to come … :)

  • Ambrose — 9:57 AM on April 19, 2013

    None of the options in “Which of these statements expresses your opinion of Adobe Creative Cloud?” express my opinions.

    Either this is not a real survey, or it is really, really, really badly designed…

    [My sense is that it *is* a real survey, but it was designed by committee (“Let’s educate while we query!”) and thus ends up being a goofy, possibly intelligence-insulting endeavor. –J.]

    • Nat Brown — 11:21 AM on April 19, 2013

      I’d have to agree, John. You can tell the brass I think the survey is lame.

      I found it interesting that I love the Cloud and would sell it anywhere at anytime but for none of the reasons listed in the survey.

      Sounds like Adobe is pushing back on a lot of misinformation. I see the Photoshop guys, Lynda, Adobe TV and other sources regularly trying to dispel Cloud myths.

      Too bad. It may not be the product for everyone but I think it’s great.

      Finally, I think some of the grousing is sour grapes. The Cloud may be more expensive than buying individual products/suites. At the same time, I think it’s more product. Imagine that, paying more for more. Shocks the conscience. :-)

      • Rick Popham — 5:48 PM on April 20, 2013

        “Finally, I think some of the grousing is sour grapes. The Cloud may be more expensive than buying individual products/suites. At the same time, I think it’s more product. Imagine that, paying more for more. Shocks the conscience. :-)”

        Well, you know, Nat, if I needed more product I’d be happy to pay for it. But if I’m going to be pushed into paying for what I don’t need, then I’m going to “grouse”.

        And if the perpetual license that I’m happy with is devalued in an attempt to push me into something I don’t want or need, then I’ll “grouse” some more. I don’t see how sour grapes has anything to do with it. You’re welcome to the “Cloud” if it works for you.

    • Ambrose — 11:40 AM on April 19, 2013

      The thing is, we don’t really get to see the “real” questions at the end until the early questions are fixed. I honestly can’t select any answer to the question I quoted and say that’s my opinion.

      People in that committee should all go back to school :-/

    • ProDesignTools — 11:55 AM on April 19, 2013

      Hi @Ambrose, these were the choices for that question – none of them work?

      () It’s a great way to get Adobe creative tools, services and more. I’d recommend it.
      () I need to understand the value of subscription vs. traditional product purchase.
      () I’m not sure what’s in it or how it would help me. I need to learn more.

      If there are other thoughts, then the last page of the survey has two write-in fields – which are probably the feedback value John sees for folks here who already know much of the rest.

      • Ambrose — 12:03 PM on April 19, 2013

        @ProDesignTools – That’s correct. None of them work.

        2 and 3 can be immediately ruled out. (Well, technically 2 could be a candidate depending on how you interpret it. That’s one thing that’s wrong with this question: There’s no way to clarify our answers.)

        1 is sort of close but not quite right. I can’t really honestly say it’s a “great” way. You could say if they dropped the word “great” I would have selected this option.

        The real reasons I subscribed to it was because of a promotional discount and the ability to switch language families. I need to switch between all three (European, CJK, and ME). I don’t think I can insteall all three. And it’d have been unreasonably expensive. The promo discount pushed me to subscribe even though at the time I didn’t know how well the switching would work. (Now I know the answer: It doesn’t work very well at all, but good enough for my purposes.)

        So objectively speaking this matches none of the options offered in that question.

      • Ambrose — 12:13 PM on April 19, 2013

        The problem with the write-in field at the end is that we never got to even see that page. When we get stuck at poorly designed questions like this one, we just drop out of the survey.

        The thing is I can’t really trust Adobe, or anyone running any survey for that matter, to not blindly trust these coded answers when they do their final analysis. All questions like these should have an “Other” or “None of the above” field, and, if necessary, “I don’t know” and/or “Not applicable”.

      • Arno Neemers — 11:26 PM on April 20, 2013

        The problem with the three questions on “your opinion of Adobe Creative Cloud” are that they presuppose your opinion is (or will be) that it’s great. No real opportunity is provided for a dissenting opinion, and that’s why it comes across as a marketing piece and not a genuine survey.

        Option one, obviously, translates as “It’s good.”

        Option two and three both translate as “It’s good, and I just haven’t been given enough information to know why yet.”

        If there was an option four that said “I understand Creative Cloud’s features, but it isn’t the right product for me”, people would likely have no issue with the form.

  • Roy Smyth — 11:03 AM on April 19, 2013

    Seems more like a cheap promo than a survey.

    Saddened to see it mentioned here, but business is business…

  • salvis — 11:11 AM on April 19, 2013

    propaganda?

    • salvis — 11:12 AM on April 19, 2013

      BTW John, thanks for the link and the opportunity to express ourselves to Adobe.

  • PECourtejoie — 11:34 AM on April 19, 2013

    I posted the number one problem I’ve heard from most users I talked to: Currently, there is no way for an user to “earn” a perpetual version after subscribing for a while.

    Imagine someone deciding to upgrade from CS6 to the cloud, and they subscribe for two years, then decide to quit afterwards, they can’t upgrade to a perpetual version, and are “stuck” with CS6.

  • Edward Caruso — 12:28 PM on April 19, 2013

    I suffered through the sales pitch to express my displeasure at the push to CC in general.
    The answer to third question about “which do you think is true about CC” is really funny. I would consider this “survey” pretty insulting.
    Its funny – I talk to alot of retouchers and they all think the idea of renting – w/o earning a full license is ridiculous.

  • K Brown — 1:02 PM on April 19, 2013

    I think it’s what’s called a “self love” statement disguised as a “survey”.
    Do you love Adobe?
    A: Absolutely
    B: You are God
    C: I will give my first born.

  • michael jahn — 2:49 PM on April 19, 2013

    http://boblevine.us/what-will-it-take-to-move-everyone-to-creative-cloud/

    Best set of comments on the subject I have seen thus far

  • MattL — 3:29 PM on April 19, 2013

    Never, ever, ever, jeopardize your customers trust in your brand with shady marketing like this. If I were you guys I’d pull this survey ASAP. It looks really bad.

  • Rick Popham — 5:06 PM on April 19, 2013

    This is pretty much a sales pitch, not a survey. In fact, all of the Adobe surveys I’ve received have taken this tone:

    “You NEED to LEARN more about the Creative Cloud!” There are very few questions relevant to the way I perceive the “Cloud”.

    I use Photoshop Standard and Lightroom. Even if I liked the subscription model, it would cost me more to subscribe because the only option is Photoshop Extended. In fact, given the price of subscribing to the whole suite, the price for an individual app is WAY too high — especially considering its’ ephemeral nature.

    A question: Who or what is “ProDesignTools”? Is this some sort of Adobe PR publication?

  • Scott Boucher — 5:57 PM on April 19, 2013

    Rick,

    ProDesignTools is someone who is either directly associated with Adobe or is a HUGE Adobe fan. He participates in a lot of these online discussions about Creative Cloud pushing the Adobe company line. Unlike John Nack and Bob Levine he never seems to acknowledge that CC is not for everyone and that there are legitimate issues with the service.

    • ProDesignTools — 12:34 PM on April 20, 2013

      Not at all. Generally we’re big Adobe users and fans, but we are not Adobe – and in fact in response to this survey, one of our staff submitted a 250-word summary of the feedback left on our site about the Creative Cloud since last May… We’ve also been in touch directly with John and other Adobe folks over the past year, expressing similar comments.

      We hear clearly from Adobe that the future is Creative Cloud. And as it is now, already from the numbers, it can be called a success. However, we as much as anyone want it to be a solution that works well for as many customers as possible, especially longtime loyal users – and we hope that next month they expand the purchasing & upgrade options available for the Cloud.

      Some people may be opposed to the model for ideological reasons, but we suspect that if tomorrow Adobe announced the complete Creative Cloud would cost $15/month for all customers, then 90% of the rest of the base would jump on it… We may eventually get to a point like that down the line, as adoption continues to grow – but in the meantime, that means it’s more or less a question of price for most of the remaining users.

      • Rick Popham — 5:41 PM on April 20, 2013

        “However, we as much as anyone want it to be a solution that works well for as many customers as possible, especially longtime loyal users – and we hope that next month they expand the purchasing & upgrade options available for the Cloud..”

        And I hope they do right by their perpetual license customers. But I have a feeling that we’ll be screwed.

      • Scott Boucher — 7:56 PM on April 20, 2013

        …but we suspect that if tomorrow Adobe announced the complete Creative Cloud would cost $15/month for all customers, then 90% of the rest of the base would jump on it…

        PDT – this seems to be the part you’re not getting. I don’t get the impression that Creative Cloud dissenters just want a cheaper price. I think we’re just asking that we not be forced to pay for a lot of software we likely won’t use. Some of that is inevitable. I purchased CS6 knowing that I wouldn’t use Flash, Dreamweaver or Fireworks very much. But the rest of the Suite is so valuable to me, I’m willing to accept those pieces too. With Creative Cloud, I’m being asked to accept a LOT more software that, again, I’ll likely never use. Why not offer a happy medium by allowing customers to subscribe to the same lineup of software offered in the CS6 for $24.99/month or even $29.99/month? As you stated, there will still be people who are against the whole idea of a the subscription model but, just for the record, price is only part of the equation. Price is also tied to value. Yes, the Creative Cloud offers a lot for the money but if I’m only using 5-6 applications out of the entire Master Suite, then then a lot of that “value” goes down the toilet.

  • metai — 6:16 PM on April 19, 2013

    It’s sad, really. This so-called “survey” just confirms that Adobe believes the only reason not to switch to Cloud is a lack of information.

    Quite the opposite is true. I’ve thought hard and long about it. And as long as I’ll only need a smaller suite and I’ll break even to pay-to-own, I will not join your SaaS scheme, I’m sorry. Maybe you should consider not only offering your top-tier product.

    (For the record, I’m an Adobe customer since Photoshop 3.0.5, i.e. for the better part of the last 20 years. And I’m subscribing to various other SaaS services. So, not a newbie to the table, and not rejecting SaaS out of principle.)

  • karl — 1:37 AM on April 20, 2013

    Cloud? Forget it. Even not for surveys.

  • Andrew Meit — 5:21 AM on April 20, 2013

    Propaganda plain and simple. I hope somehow Abode gets broken up and prices and support return to being reasonable again. I know Adobe will find a way to force me to go Cloud. Cunning and manipulative company!

  • Mayoi Rithwic — 8:50 AM on April 20, 2013

    Creative Cloud is a fabulous business decision on Adobe’s part. When your revenue comes from product updates, you are tied to a large development team constantly creating new features to convince customers to buy an upgrade. With Creative Cloud, your customers are locked into paying you a yearly fee whether you offer anything new or not. That means Adobe can increase their revenue stream (thereby making their stockholders very happy!) by reducing the size of the development team. I’m sure some of you will want to believe that Adobe will continue to offer extensive updates out of a sense of altruism — but in the end, Adobe is a business and there is no justification for spending significant amounts of money on development when it has no impact on their revenue stream. The irony, of course, is John posting a link to a so-called survey that merely encourages people to switch to the Cloud which if enough customers do will probably result in the termination of John’s job. John’s position with the company will no longer be profitable once enough customers have switched to the subscription model of doing business.

    • ProDesignTools — 5:20 PM on April 20, 2013

      Wow, so you honestly believe that Adobe’s Grand Strategy is to get customers on the Cloud and then cease development of its products, thus dramatically slowing its growth and eventually ensuring its very own demise?

  • Rover — 8:56 AM on April 20, 2013

    John- I’ve come to distrust Adobe’s intentions. I have nothing against a company making money from its products (see Apple), but over the years there has been a remarkable change at Adobe. For a company that used to be loved by creatives and that supported creatives in what they do, Adobe now seems like a hucksterish company trying to unload its products to anyone and everyone at exorbitant prices. If you haven’t already lost the trust of your customers, you’re on your way to losing it from my POV.

    It’s a bad sign when friends of mine within Adobe question the value and stability of Creative Cloud themselves and advise me to put it off as long as possible (or at least as long as I’m able). For a small business like mine, Creative Cloud is *way* overkill – and far too expensive. Couple that with Adobe’s increasingly poor customer service and hackneyed technical implementation (e.g. the Adobe Application Manager continues to be a travesty), it can make the relationship with Adobe really painful as a customer because you know there are limited or no viable alternative software products for doing serious professional work, but you feel like you’re being held hostage in terms of price, constant upgrades, technical snafus, poor customer service, etc.

    • Scott Boucher — 7:44 PM on April 20, 2013

      I’ve been one of the harshest critics of Creative Cloud on this and several other similar online discussions. That said, I still love the Adobe products I use on a daily basis and genuinely hope to be using them in the years to come. I simply have significant differences with the way that Adobe has chosen to push those products on their customers. This survey doesn’t help. Even fans of Creative Cloud have commented on its self-serving tone. I don’t see how this can be viewed as anything other than a lack of leadership within the company. It’s a real shame. I get the impression that the people actually creating the products have a real passion and belief in the work they do. Unfortunately for them, it seems they report to a management team that’s more concerned about appeasing shareholders and keeping their own jobs than building great products that everyone will love.

  • Dani Staeger — 9:08 AM on April 20, 2013

    After all the issues in the past months and reading this survey my trust in Adobe went even further down.
    Not really looking forward to May, I expect bad news for perpetual users.

  • 432423432 — 1:58 PM on April 20, 2013

    i dont use the cloud, never will… if im forced i will use warez.

  • Richard Broom — 2:33 AM on April 21, 2013

    Well John……..after fighting against Creative Cloud for quite some time now (especially on the pricing side of things) I have just subscribed. I’ll see how I get on. One thing I didn’t discuss (bought over the telephone) is what happens if I decide to go back to the standard model (buying upgrades when they come along).

    Watch this space!

    Richard

    • Rick Popham — 4:31 AM on April 21, 2013

      I expect that you’ll have to keep current on your perpetual license as well in order to be eligible for perpetual upgrades.

      If you decide to stop your “Cloud” subscription, you lose the use of the product, but can go back to using your perpetual software. But if your perpetual software is more than one version back, you’ll be out of luck for upgrade pricing.

      • Richard Broom — 6:02 AM on April 21, 2013

        Good point. I am nearing retirement and it will have to jump off the merry-go-round at some stage. I’ve had to do some serious juggling with the accounts and I’ve decided not to renew my NAPP membership in order to help pay for Creative Cloud (sorry Mr Kelby).

        Also notice that Adobe Captivate is not (for some reason) not included in the Creative Cloud offering and wonder why this is.

        I would like to move into digital publishing (in a small way) and so that makes the Creative Cloud thing interesting. Not sure if I will use Behance but we’ll see.

        So far so good but hoping I haven’t made a HUGE mistake here!!!

        Best Wishes

        Richard

  • Tink — 3:43 AM on April 22, 2013

    “ProDesignTools is someone who is either directly associated with Adobe or is a HUGE Adobe fan.”

    Although this is denied above, in the past I have left negative comments about Adobe on the ProDesignerTools blog and they had the cheek to actually edit them!

    I contacting them I was sent a reply stating that their terms of posting comments state that they can edit the comments if they so wish.

    In the end I requested my comments were removed from the blog which they were and I haven’t bothered visiting the one sided, drinking the Adobe cool aid blog since.

    Kept meaning to post about the experience on my own blog to be honest as I felt that editing someones comment if it doesn’t fit your agenda is shocking.

    [Where have you experienced your comments being edited on an Adobe blog? The only editing I ever do is to insert comments like this one. I do that because it makes it easier to address questions & concerns point-by-point. –J.]

    • Cosmo — 4:42 AM on April 22, 2013

      The ProDesignTools site seems to be a high-level affiliate site for Adobe, although they go out of their way to not be clear about their relationship. To be fair, they provide links to many useful Adobe resources and explain Adobe purchase and upgrade policies sometimes better than Adobe. But don’t expect them to ever be anything but an Adobe cheerleader. I have never seen a WORD of criticism about Adobe on their site.

    • Rick Popham — 6:36 PM on April 22, 2013

      @John

      Tink was describing his experience on the “ProDesignTools” site. Most of us know how you run your blog, and we don’t often express our appreciation for your fairness and tolerance. So, at least from me, thanks John.

  • Tink — 3:43 AM on April 23, 2013

    To be totally clear I have never experience you or Adobe editing my comments posted on blogs and I apologize if my post read that way.

  • KC — 7:33 AM on April 23, 2013

    In my opinion (and I stated as much in the survey), Adobe’s Creative Cloud is failing—miserably. Why else would they need to have this survey to begin with? Why else would the survey be so heavily skewed? Why else would the Adobe employees and representatives be so hell-bent to help us “learn” about the Creative Cloud and dispel “myths?”

    The so-called “myths” or FUD (fear, uncertainty, and doubt) that is holding most non-CC users back is still not being addressed—and in my opinion—purposefully being avoided. Why? Because truthful answers to those questions and concerns will surely spell the demise of CC permanently. (And before John can add his quip or derogatory statement about what those questions/concerns could possibly be—acting all innocent and doe-eyed—they have been repeated over and over again, and have been ignored over and over again.)

    Adobe has recently been pushing itself as the “master” of marketing. Well, whomever put this survey together, and whomever is telling the Adobe staff and representatives to continue to avoid answering the real questions about the CC—it is all gone horribly wrong and only goes to show that Adobe is not really a “master” of anything—just a monopoly holder of certain markets, and is looking to over-monetize that monopoly, instead of service that monopoly.

    The CC is not bad. How it is being marketed and priced is bad. Unfortunately for Adobe, the CC nonsense is just the foot-in-the-door that other competitors (current or potential) can use to knock Adobe of its pedestal and welcome it back to reality.

  • Dani Staeger — 9:11 AM on April 24, 2013

    Well, had a visit from Adobe today. It seems they realized how serious I am about my issues. The guy was friendly but it was all too clear that the country office cannot do anything except holding hands. The new versions look interesting, but: some days ago I posted that I don’t look forward to the May announcements. And it seem I was right. I just say: compare the release dates for cloud verus release dates for perpetual users.
    Several days ago we had Autodesk in the house. These guys rolled out the red carpet for us, so the simple conclusion: goodbye Premiere, hello Smoke. Everything regarding web development we already changed months ago. The only thing that stays are some Photoshop licenses. Haven’t yet decided if and when I’ll upgrade these.
    Epic fail Adobe, I prefer to be treated like a valued customer.

    • Jeffrey Tranberry — 2:29 PM on April 24, 2013

      Hi Dani,

      Who visited you from Adobe? I looked up your support cases based on the email address you used to post to John’s blog here and I see no support cases. I’ll send you an email. Perhaps it was under a different Adobe ID.

  • Gary Bradley — 2:37 AM on May 02, 2013

    I subscribed to the CC back when it launched last year and on the whole I’ve been very happy to pay the discounted fee for the first year which is great value for us, but if you don’t need all of the apps then that value naturally diminishes. The new higher rate seems a little high in my humble opinion, and especially for many of the Design Agencies that I teach as an Adobe Certified Instructor. They tend to skip a boxed version to off-set the costs.

    My big concern has been the fact that we have been billed by “Adobe Systems Inc” for an unauthorized amount of £22.80 on three occasions during our first year subscription. Despite providing bank statements and having my bank trace the authorization codes and supply these to cross reference, Adobe Customer services claim they have not billed me and keep trying to close my case history.

  • Rich — 11:32 AM on May 03, 2013

    It is a simple matter of value, I use just one product and I’m in no way going to pay $1600 over 3 years for a product that costs me $199 to upgrade every 3 years, there’s just not enough added value to make up that difference.

    [Photoshop on its own is $20/mo., so in your example it would cost $720 over three years. That’s less than the $899 you’d pay to buy the app and then upgrade it once during that period. –J.]

    The pricing scheme is very poorly conceived if I’m the target market, I’m sure Adobe knows that, only someone with money to burn would blindly walk into it using just Photoshop. If I used enough Adobe products that my cost was $1600+ over 3 years in upgrades or even $1300 I would probably go that way. As it is it would be like a community tax where my part covers the people who use way more than me and are getting a deal going to CC. When they offer cheaper plans for people who use say 1-3 products then I’ll be all over it. I’m really happy I have the option not to choose it and go on buying out right, thank you Adobe!

  • Brent — 12:03 PM on May 11, 2013

    I will continue to use my current license of CS6 until it is not supported any more. At that point, bye-bye Adobe (unless they go back to the current form of licensing.)

    I’ve already started looking in to Corel’s Paint Shop Pro X5, GIMP and other option.

    My biggest complaints about the Creative Cloud are (1) the need to connect to the Internet for the product to work, and (2) the fees are too high.

  • Marc Sontag — 6:25 AM on May 15, 2013

    I am a long time user of Photoshop and Lightroom. Here’s my plan Adobe – I will continue to use CS6 as long as it is compatible with my OS and pray like hell that one of your competitors provides me with an alternative so I can switch.

  • Dan Harftford — 9:33 PM on May 22, 2013

    Bad, Bad, Bad.

    I have nothing against CC for those people for whome it offers advantages and is a good cost/benefit model. However, for what seems like most people, including myself, the CC has a dramatic negative cost benefit model – no matter how you slice it (and yes I know the options available).

    Up until the anouncement of Dropping CS as a perpetual license product Ihad been toying with the idea of using – or at least trying it. Now I absolutly refuse to even consider CC for any use other than downloading perpetual license SW products such as LR or Photoshop CS6.

    I will stay with my current version of Photoshop (CS5) and may consider upping it to CS6 as a perpetual license product. As long as Lightroom remains a perpetual license product I will upgrade to each new release.

    However, if a time comes when my perpetual license version of one or more Adobe product ceases to function for me (new computer OS not supported, New Camera not supported by ACR or LR, etc.) I will switch to a competitor product rather than be railroaded into CC.

    As I said, for some folks CC is a good deal. For many it is not. Adobe is losing the support, and loyalty (and revenue) of this latter group. I have every confidence that some other SW company will fill this vacuum and accept Ex-Adobe customers with open arms. In fact I’m starting to hear rumors of some such companies offering “upgrqade” pricing for their products, rather than “first time” pricing for people who already have a parallel Adobe product installed – I don’t know which companies (yet) or even if it’s true, but it sounds good.

  • Douglas Dooley — 8:42 AM on May 23, 2013

    The CC approach is an extraordinarily bad concept. I for one will continue to use my CS6 until an Adobe competitor develops a comparable product in a shrink-wrapped box that is internet-free. I had been considering purchasing stock in Adobe as a market leader. Not now.

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