My Creative Cloud Nightmare

Discussion in 'Web Design and Development' started by CE3, Nov 6, 2015.

  1. CE3, Nov 6, 2015
    Last edited: Nov 6, 2015

    CE3 macrumors 65816

    Nov 26, 2014
    TLDR ahead.. but I need to vent.

    I’ve been a Creative Cloud subscriber for over three years now (since around the time it debuted). I always understood why longtime customers were unhappy with Adobe’s decision to go 100% subscription-based, but I’ve also always been happy with the CC model because it’s what opened the Adobe Creative Suite up to me.

    Happy until now.

    The first two years I paid the full $500 rate. But last year, and now this coming year, I’ve managed to find good deals on eBay for full 12-month subscriptions, paying around $700-$750 for two years vs. $1000. Both redemption codes were valid and redeemed with no troubles.

    So yesterday I’m working on web project for a client who needs some new stock images for their website. I remember Adobe’s new "Stock" service is offering a one month trial promotion that includes 10 images, decide to save the client a little money on expenses, sign up, and check it out.

    Big mistake apparently.

    Today I look my Chase accounts and notice a $79 charge from Adobe on one of my cards. I sign into Adobe and see the same $79 charge + two pending credits and I’m not sure what’s going on. I call customer service thinking maybe I need to cancel the Adobe Stock subscription, only to be informed that signing up for the Adobe Stock Trial effectively cancelled my fully paid CC subscription—paid through September 2016—and put me on a brand new monthly $49 CC plan + $29 for the Adobe Stock subscription ($79 total). The two credits I was seeing were for the Adobe Stock trial this month, but should I decide to keep both services going forward, this is what I’ll be charged until November 2016.

    So now I’m thinking surely they’ll look at my account, see that my CC subscription is already paid for the next 10 months, and quickly fix the error, right?


    The first “solution” offered to me was to contact the merchant I bought the code from and request a refund. I couldn’t believe it. Had there been an issue with the code when I redeemed it over four months ago I would’ve demanded a refund, or taken action via Ebay, PayPal and my credit card if necessary to get my money back. But there were--and are--no issues with the code. It was accepted and redeemed by Adobe in June and I have email confirmation of this.

    The second person I talked to basically told me my options were to either bend over and accept that I’m now going to be double charged for CC services until next September, or cancel my subscription.

    Thankfully, the first rep I spoke with called me back after talking to her supervisor, managed to cancel the new subscription and provide me with enough service credits to keep me paid through Sept. And while I’m very thankful and appreciative of her for calling back and resolving the matter (at least I’m hoping it’s resolved, because if it’s not I will fight this in any way I can), I am absolutely flabbergasted by what I had to go through for nearly two hours on the phone (fighting, begging, threatening legal action, etc.) to get services I’ve clearly already paid for restored. And all because I signed up for stock image trial.

    Apparently one of the smartest technology companies on the planet doesn’t have systems in place that are smart enough to make sure their customers aren’t double charged for their software leases. And apparently their customer service department is barely competent enough to fix such an error. The whole thing was a f*king mess, and if this is what being a loyal, paying customer gets you with Adobe, I’m left wondering if I need to reevaluate how heavily I rely on their apps in the future.
  2. rochow macrumors member

    Aug 20, 2013

    However your story is a standard "big company problem" - too many departments, people only know about their little area, they don't know how to resolve anything outside of their knowledge etc. Keep in mind tons of staff are outsourced and quite limited in their access which certainly doesn't help.

    They've changed so much & rapidly over the years no doubt their system is held together with tape. Code gets messy very quickly when it's modified to do things it wasn't designed to do. Multiply that by lots of staff, lots of customers, Adobe's complicated & ever changing services and pricing structure - it would be a nightmare to manage.

    It's definitely worrying as companies move to this "we control everything" model however are unable to do it properly. This is a lot less of a problem under the old "you buy the program, it's now yours" model.
  3. CE3, Nov 7, 2015
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2015

    CE3 thread starter macrumors 65816

    Nov 26, 2014
    Agreed. And with Adobe, it's hard to find many viable alternatives that top some of their apps, especially when you put the whole Suite together.

    The people I spoke to were from India, but I speak to outsourced agents when I call Amazon sometimes, for example, and if I was charged for a Prime subscription twice, they'd have a refund issued and I'd be off the phone in 5-10 minutes tops.. because outsourced or not, one company clearly values proper customer service more than the other.

    While neither of the people I spoke to yesterday were rude or unprofessional in their tones, this was probably the worst customer service situation I've ever dealt with simply for the pure insanity of it all.

    Both were able to see and acknowledge that my subscription was paid for the next 10 months before the Adobe Stock signup, yet neither felt there was anything they needed to do to remedy the situation until I pleaded my case over and over again.

    I'm grateful it hopefully got resolved, but completely shocked and troubled by how much effort and energy it took on my part to make it happen.
  4. lucidmedia macrumors 6502a

    Oct 13, 2008
    Wellington, New Zealand
    What type of Creative Cloud membership did you buy from eBay? As far as I know, Adobe does not recognize such places as valid or authorized resellers. It sounds like the plan you purchased from the third party was a student account.
  5. rochow macrumors member

    Aug 20, 2013
    Isn't student only $20/month for the whole suite? Vs $50/month for businesses.
    $750/2 years doesn't fit being a student one.

    To me it sounds like a classic upgrade/downgrade problem. Incompatibilities in the plans and it wasn't handled well. He's on plan X so to change to Y properly would need to figure out what $ was remaining, change it over, sometimes involves additional part payments etc. They change plans like undies, plus all their promos, legacy plans, affiliates and god knows - I'm sure it's spaghetti like most big corporations.
  6. 2457244 macrumors regular

    Jul 20, 2015
    A web design/developer still using Adobe software is also very 2010.

    If you're not working in the print industry you have totally no reason to pay lots of money for software at Adobe. I think I have paid about 250,- in 3 or 4 years to get all my software legally.
  7. CE3, Nov 8, 2015
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2015

    CE3 thread starter macrumors 65816

    Nov 26, 2014
    They were both full plans and redeemed and accepted by Adobe with no problems. I'm not a student and a student plan would've required additional verification before being activated. As I said, had there been any issues with the codes either time, I would've contacted the seller for a refund and taken additional action if necessary.

    Why I got it for less, I don't know, but I was happy to save a little money. Maybe Adobe gives out free subscriptions occasionally and some people decide to sell them.

    Yes, when I signed up for the Adobe Stock Trial it cancelled my current CC plan and put me on a new "All Apps + Adobe Stock" plan. The the only thing that should have been added was the Adobe Stock subscription.

    I'm also a photographer and incorporate that work into a lot of my web design projects.. and I'll be using Premiere and After Effects more for video projects soon. I need their apps, but after this whole experience I'm wishing I needed them less.
  8. dan1eln1el5en macrumors 6502


    Jan 3, 2012
    Copenhagen, Denmark
  9. keysofanxiety macrumors G3


    Nov 23, 2011
    Reading stuff like this just reiterates my displeasure for Adobe. The OP is paying for subscription software, as they should, and getting a terrible experience out of it. Joe Bloggs decides to pirate CS6 (or even CC if they've managed to crack that), and has a flawless experience.

    The same goes for Avid - absolutely terrible company to deal with, ridiculous pricing, iLoks galore, Sibelius student 'upgrades' that don't really work ... it's all a mess. And again, Joe happily downloads his application without paying a penny, and doesn't get any of the headaches that go with it.

    The measures companies are going through in order to prevent piracy are, quite clearly, harming the consumers who actually pay for the software. It's like changing the locks on your door every week for security. It frustrates the people who have the keys, yet still does nothing to stop the thief with the crowbar.

    OP, for your sake, I hope Adobe sort out their mess.
  10. rochow macrumors member

    Aug 20, 2013
    Look at basically any company that has required "online verification" of games. Absolutely mess of a system.

    It's growing common - from music, to movies, to news, to games... and hardly anyone gets it right. They are trying to retain 100% control with systems that are amateur hour at best.

    Even stupid **** like DRM. "Oh you bought a game from the UK on holiday? Yeah mate downloaded content won't work you're a pirate burn in hell".

    Meanwhile look at any company selling products for the same price irregardless of country... works like a dream.
  11. Les Kern macrumors 68040

    Les Kern

    Apr 26, 2002
    Affinity Photo and CS5 is a good combo. Sorry for your troubles, but once Adobe went sub based I said "no".
  12. jonnysods macrumors 603


    Sep 20, 2006
    There & Back Again
    Oh man I'm sorry to read this story, and it reaffirms my decision to buy the CS6 suite and roll with it for as long as I can. I wish they didn't go to the subscription model. Adobe is the Microsoft of creative apps. I'd move, but photoshop and illustrator is my whole life!
  13. Audio_Birdi macrumors newbie

    Mar 8, 2016
    Sorry to hear your story. This is why I potentially wanted to avoid Adobe once they switched to the CC platform. I had CS5 but decided to sell it off and start fresh after thinking things over.

    I found very worthy alternatives to Adobe software which is indeed a blessing since there are many developers creating great software. I wanted to avoid Avid too last year since they switched to subscription for Pro Tools too. PT 11 was full of bugs also :/.

    Here's a list which you may find useful for future if you decide to leave the Adobe service:

    Photoshop alternative = Affinity Photo
    Illustrator alt. = Affinity Designer
    Dreamweaver / Muse alt. = Pinegrow Web Editor
    Audition alt. = Cockos Reaper
    Premiere / Speedgrade alt. = DaVinci Resolve
    After Affects alt. = Blackmagic Fusuin

    All the software is low cost or free in some instances! All work just as well, if not better. And best of all, none are subscription based. :)
  14. laurim macrumors 68000


    Sep 19, 2003
    Minnesota USA
    What would you do if a client send you a psd, ae or ai file? Not to mention the fact that you can't use all the awesome plug-ins and add ons developed for Adobe products.
  15. Audio_Birdi macrumors newbie

    Mar 8, 2016
    I can open psd and ai files in Affinity Designer / Photo. In regards to After Effects, I tend not to do motion graphics as I mainly web develop / sound design / compose music for clients.

    I admit After Effects has some awesome plugins, I tend to use Final Cut Pro X / Motion 5 for video editing / motion graphics. i've only delved into Blackmagic Fusion recently just to have a test-out with it. :).
  16. oneshotpro Suspended

    Aug 13, 2014

    which software do you use as a designer?
  17. IceCubeCat101 macrumors newbie

    Feb 3, 2016
    ooooor you can say, "fk adobe!" and use

    I use it for everything ;p

Share This Page

16 November 6, 2015