Last week I wrote a guest blog for Just Another iPhone Blog about the new Spotify app. There were a couple of comments, one of which recommended jailbreaking which apparently allows the app to run in the background, the lack of which is one of its major failings (Apple’s not Spotify’s fault). He says that otherwise the app is not worth paying for Spotify’s premium service, which costs £10.
I fully understand people being in the position where they can’t afford such niceties or aren’t willing to pay for them. It’s only in the last couple of years that I’ve had a bit of spare cash to enable me to do so. But I made a conscious decision a couple of years ago that I would stop illegally downloading and stop using cracked software. This coincided with my move over to using a macbook instead of my juddering, virus-riddled heap of a PC. I’m reluctant to jailbreak right now for the same reason – I prefer to know for certain that the thing is going to work right..
This may be over-cautious but I made this decision for another reason also: I want to get paid for being creative. Whether that be my writing, or some other outlet, I want, no – need to get into the position where I can support myself on my creative endeavours. And if I don’t support others financially for providing me with an excellent service or product, whether it be a great album, an ebook or an iPhone app, then I can’t expect to get money back in the future. This may seem a bit airy fairy but I do firmly believe that you get back what you put out.
Mac fanboys and girls are sometimes described as “Paytards” for being willing to shell out cash for programmes and apps that could be easily found for free on a PC. The opposite of a Paytard is of course a Freetard. The obvious argument against each position being:
- Paytards are stupid for paying a premium price for something they could easily get for free and for signing up to locked-in systems which purposefully restrict users freedoms (e.g. most Apple products!)
Freetards are stupid for wasting a lot of valuable time messing around with illegal downloads and inferior products when they could just pay a reasonable price for a product which works well out of the box – and in the case of a locked-in system, works seamlessly as part of a larger whole.
Which one works for you depends on whether you have a lot of time or a lot of money. A lot of people have neither, and up until recently I was one of those. So I had to go for the freetard route but didn’t have enough time to fully take advantage of it. Now I have more available cash than I have available time (not a lot more but enough to afford the odd luxury), so it makes sense for me to pay for products and services which provide added convenience to my life.
The irony of this is that the way I currently earn my money is not rewarding or satisfying as it doesn’t involve any creativity. So I can have all the niceties I want, but until I change my working life to one that’s satisfying, those things are never going to make me happy.
I guess I need to cut down on some of my spending and start saving so I can change jobs/careers, which may lead to a substantial pay cut for a while at least. Perhaps I will need to stop being such a paytard… (now what iPhone app shall I buy today….)