An open letter to nUI "users" and supporters... - WoWInterface
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11-14-13, 12:44 PM   #1
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An open letter to nUI "users" and supporters...

This is a hard letter to write, but one I nonetheless feel I must.

I have been a WoW player and modder pretty much since vanilla WoW. If memory serves me correctly, the first version of nUI released was for WoW patch 1.2 – or maybe that was the first big nUI update? -- What I remember of the early days of WoW was the sense of gamer community… guilds were large and players worked closely together to help one another achieve their levels, dungeons and instances. There was no shortage of jerks in those days, but they were the outliers and largely ostracized by the community.

The nUI community was much the same… large, active and quick to help one another.

I have long sensed that the game was different after the introduction of the dungeon and raid finder… there was less need for a guild among the average players and only the hardcore raiding guilds really had a purpose. The game changed. There was really no need for cooperation and dungeons and raids became a place where it was a race to see how fast it could be completed, no one spoke to anyone and rudeness and crassness were the norm. In this environment, the jerks thrived and multiplied.

Sadly, the last few weeks have led me to believe the same has become the case in the nUI community. While there remains a select few truly wonderful and caring people in the community, the vast majority just wants free software and free support and couldn’t care less about anything else. And if the crap I have had to put up with in my email inbox over the last few weeks is any indication, a non-trivial segment of the nUI user base are “users” in the crassest form of the word. The volume of expletive laced, crude, insulting, vitriol I’ve read has put me off in the biggest way. I won’t quote the crass things that have been written to me.

nUI has well over 1 million downloads in its history. Likewise, it has had well over 100,000 unique users over the years. At present, it has close to 14,000 subscribers to the newsletter. Each and every download, unique user and newsletter subscriber is someone who has used nUI… they play the game using the fruits of my labor, send me forum posts and emails asking me to solve their problems using nUI, fix bugs, add features, etc. This I have happily done for many years during which time I have rarely asked anything of them… I ask only that they consider making a donation to support the time, energy and resources I invest in keeping nUI alive. Historically, when I have reached out to the community over one need or another, they have responded with kindness and consideration and come through for me.

Recently I undertook a cause that was very near and dear to me on the most personal level. It isn’t about global warming, or socialism, or even political. It was about a lifetime desire to conserve something precious, create a legacy, a place for education, research and relaxation and a place from which I could work in the future. I asked just three simple things of the nUI user community in regard to that…
  1. Please look at my link at and read my storyhttp://igg.eco-geeks.org
  2. Please consider supporting my goal with a contribution… if only because it is important to me
  3. Please share my goal with people you know who would appreciate the intent
What I got in response to emailing that request to over 13,000 users of my free software was two people who wrote me to say thank you for what I was doing, fewer than a dozen who made a contribution (for which I am eternally grateful) and more hate-filled rhetoric than I could stomach or cared to respond to anymore… there were many times more people who sent me hate mail than there were who showed any sort of support or appreciation. Day after day new emails written specifically for the sake of punishing me in one way or another for having the audacity to ask those who use my software to read an email or give a crap about something other than precisely their free software and support.

The common thread being that I had no right to ask the people who use my software for free to read an email from me about something that was important to me and “not about nUI” – well, I have news for these people… I am nUI. I write it and maintain it for the enjoyment I get from the challenge and for my love of the nUI community. Trust me, I make next to nothing in donations and I don’t need my ego stroked. I do it because I love(d) the community of nUI users and WoW players.

Sadly…I can no longer make that statement. I am disgusted by the (a) apathy and (b) hatefulness I have been witness to over the last couple of weeks.

At present I am traveling (in support of the eco-geeks.org project) with very limited data access, so I have had a great deal of time to contemplate these recent events. In addition, each time I have gotten access to data, my email box has filled itself up with more hate from the people who use my software.

It leads me to ask myself a singular question: why am I bothering to do this anymore?

The answer to that is, at first, “because I have loyal and caring supporters” – then I realize there are so many more people who are willing to call me expletive filled names and yell at me than there are caring supporters and I left with the answer “I don’t know why I do this anymore”

So, there it is.

I have come to the sad conclusion that I will no longer support nUI publicly. I will no longer make public releases of nUI, either. The vast majority of the nUI user base has made it perfectly clear they don’t give a crap and a non-trivial segment of those users have gone the extra step to kick sand in my face and tell me to piss off about what’s important to me and to just keep giving them their free support and updates.

Well… in the real world, when you kick sand in the face of those who help you for free, you can’t be real surprised when they tell you to go pound sand. And that’s where I am.

To the existing nUI supporters and those who have contributed to my campaign at http://igg.eco-geeks.org, please know that I will continue to support you and I will continue to provide updates in the supporters only (premium) section of nUIaddon.com and that I will not abandon you. Sometime next week I’ll send you direct private email on that subject. However, if you feel that my decision to stop providing free public support and updates to nUI is in contradiction to your donation to nUI, please e-mail me and I will gladly issue you a full refund of your donation, no questions asked.

As already noted, I am traveling with limited data access, and therefore cannot respond to emails or posts until next week. Nor can I implement any of the changes I’m calling out here. However, after I get back to the States next week, I will be closing the public nUI support forums on both WoWI and nUIaddon.com and setting up a single-support forum for the past nUI donors and those who have been contributing code changes and fixes. I will also be discontinuing all new public releases and will not respond to any public or email requests for support from anyone outside this select group.

I would like to remind everyone that nUI is NOT public domain software… unauthorized distribution of any future nUI releases or modifications to the existing publicly released versions of nUI is strictly prohibited from this date forward. I will actively protect my intellectual property rights and work product.

I’m truly sorry it has come to this, but I have, frankly, never been so offended by so many and I cannot rationalize any reason why I should continue to freely support tens of thousands of people who couldn’t give less of a damn about the person who provides them the software and support they use daily, or worse, see fit to ridicule, harass and offend him.

I’m sorry… but I’m done.

Again, I thank every single person who has supported nUI over the years be it donations, contributing ideas, code fixes, or helping others, and I assure you that I will continue to support each and every one of you in private. To the rest, I will say only that in this world, you get what you give. If you give nothing, you get nothing and have no right to expect otherwise. Consider this a teaching moment.

For those of you who saw fit to email me with your hate, insults and vitriol… you have much to learn about life and you also now have a large community of people who think you are dirt bags. They are not wrong.

And on that note, I say a sad and somewhat heartbroken goodbye to the WoW community. This is the last newsletter I will be sending and the last public statement I will be making in regard to nUI.


What people don't get is that I am, ultimately, an artist at heart.
My brush has two colors, 1 and 0, and my canvas is made of silicon.

Official nUI Web Site: http://www.nUIaddon.com
Official nUI Support Forum: http://forums.nUIaddon.com
My day job: http://www.presidio.com/

WoWInterface » Featured Projects » nUI, MozzFullWorldMap and PartySpotter » Support » nUI: Announcements » An open letter to nUI "users" and supporters...

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