Though we saw the information posted in a private list first, Bite.org seems to have been the first site to publish the news at a public venue. We also have links to an editorial below from Shawn King that might also claim the "first" prize. Imagine Media, the parent company of MacAddict Magazine, has announced that it will be charging software developers to have their demos and shareware included on MacAddictis The Disk. Imagine Mediais PC Gamer, MaximumPC, and Official Xbox Magazine will also have a price tag associated with including software on their CDs as well. The pertinent part of the letter as printed by Bite.org:
As all of us are aware, though, our industry has keenly felt the high-tech downturn of the last year. Our magazines are no exception, and we find ourselves unable to continue offering demo distribution free of cost. Therefore, effective with the November issues of PC Gamer, MaximumPC, MacAddict, and Official Xbox Magazine, weill be assessing a flat-rate Distribution and Handling fee for each demo we distribute. This fee, $5,000 per commercial demo and $500 per shareware demo, will apply to all software selected by our editors for inclusion on our discs. It will help us defray the very significant cost of cover discs, and allow us to continue offering the proven, targeted sampling opportunities those discs provide.
You can read more information at Bite.orgis Web site. There is much more to the letter that was not quoted. You can find more information on MacAddictis The Disk at the MacAddict Web site. Shawn King offered an audio editorial about this issue yesterday, and has some follow-up comments on the issue today.
We have a thread on this topic in our forums for those wishing to discuss it.