This is Jonathan, the founder at Apptopia. We had something really interesting happen at Apptopia recently. It’s a first and has compelled me to write this blog post. I want to share two things with you:
- A story.
- Source code to an app called Hard Rock Player (completely free).
It seems the History of Credit Cards goes as far back as the 1960s. However, I think most would agree that really its the last 15 years where credit cards have had the greatest impact on our lives. In fact, most people I know don’t bother to carry cash, and its now quite common to see kids as young as 12 & 13 years old with credit cards their parents gave them. Wild.
In any event, I wont digress too much. What I really want to talk about is how credit cards have affected businesses, specifically online companies. Today, credit cards are nearly the ONLY way Internet businesses can accept money from their customers. And while I am sure there are a several providers who will comment on this post with other “non-credit card solutions”…the bottom-line is consumers like using credit cards, and have come to expect that all businesses will accept them. So small businesses like Apptopia are very much helpless & at the will of behemoths like MasterCard, Visa, AMEX, Authorize.net, etc.
These massive companies have quickly realized that they make the majority of their money from irresponsible consumers who either pay late or carry a balance. So it’s to these credit card companies advantage to not only let anyone and everyone have a credit card, but to actually have the “tie go to the credit card holder”.
In the past couple years this has become a huge problem for small businesses, specifically as it relates to Chargebacks.
Recently we had a buyer on Apptopia who nearly 1 month after their app acquisition, filed a charge back with VISA stating their card was used fraudulently (the most generic/common “checkbox”). Keep in mind this user:
- Has logged into Apptopia on 41 separate occasions.
- Signed a Purchase & Sale agreement.
- Made 2 payments (the first $150 deposit, and then after receiving our invoice made the 2nd payment voluntarily for the remainder of the balance).
- Had a lengthy conversation with both my Transfer Team & Google’s Support team, all in regards to transferring the application into his developer account.
I provided all of this information very diligently, organized, and on time to the credit card company and disputed the chargeback. They recently got back to me and explained that they have blindly awarded the case to the buyer as he found a very small, very specific loophole with using a foreign credit card.
*Please note we have since taken extra measures to protect against this in the future. So for anyone who thinks this is a blueprint on how to get apps for free…think again =)
I have 2 major issues here. First, to do a chargeback when you are buying software and or intellectual property rights is repugnant. Its something you can never give back. No matter what. It can never be deleted. And you know this when you are making the acquisition.
Second, its straight up disrespectful to knowingly steal money from a small business helping your community. Now just to be clear Apptopia is growing as fast as it ever has before, but we still do not have 10s of millions of dollars in the bank and we have ongoing expenses. So, money being stolen from us like this does have an impact.
My logic is simple; now that Apptopia owns this app I want to share it with the community. There is little value we could get from this app ourselves, but I figured that sharing this code, and all of its assets would be extremely valuable to the community. And frankly that is what Apptopia is all about. It’s why my co-founder Eli and I quit out jobs to build this platform to begin with.
I highly recommend that you download the code below, and share it with all of your friends. Perhaps there is a valuable element in there you can use, learn from, or test with. Who knows? But this one is on us. Enjoy!
The Source Code
Hard Rock Player
What It Does
Links to rock and roll videos and clips from around the world. It allows you to watch the top rated, most viewed, and newest hard rock videos around. Using the random video function can even surprise you. With the “My Clips” function you can also easily create a personal playlist. Simple, but useful.
Secure Link To Download: https://apptopia.box.com/shared/static/nzs5yyyba937mnhk6qht.zip
(Note the download will begin right after you click)
The Lesson To Be Learned
We have worked with customers of ours before when they have a unique situation come up where they can not follow through on a deal, or have made a mistake. We really care, and really respect people who are honest and transparent with us.
Having said that, if you try to chargeback an acquisition and you try and steal from us…very simply we will share your source code with the world.
Every time. =)