PictoColor Corporation still doesn’t get it

You all know by now that I’ve changed my photo editing computer system from a PC to a MacBook Pro. This required a lot of transferring licenses of expensive software and I’m pleased to say that 99 per cent of the companies I contacted (including Adobe since I own Lightroom 2, Photoshop Elements (two versions) and Photoshop CS4) all cooperated (Occasionally after some prompting but that’s okay. All’s well that ends well.) Adobe even apologized for some delays in responding to my request for license transfers. Most appreciated.

The only hold out has been PictoColor Corporation.iCorrectPortraitbox_100

Now PictoColor Corporation are the guys that David Ziser recommends so highly during his Digital Wake-Up Tour which I attended earlier this year in Buffalo and highly recommend. If David comes back to Buffalo in 2010 go see him whether or not you shoot weddings. You’ll learn tons about photography. I liked what David had to say about one of PictoColor’s products: ICorrect Portrait. Now I don’t do a lot of portrait shooting right now but I liked the idea that this Photoshop plugin would color correct for skin tones with just one click. It’s nothing you can’t do in Photoshop on your own but the plugin makes the job faster and more consistent. I tried it on a couple of images and it worked as advertised.  Like I said I don’t shoot portraits all the time so after awhile I stopped using the software all the time.

The original cost of ICorrect Portrait was $99 which isn’t cheap for a plugin but it worked as advertised and I was satisfied with it. Would I buy it again today? Probably not as I do most of commercial work in Lightroom 2 which has an excellent white balance mechanism that seems to get the skin tones just right. My partner Michael Willems can make his Canon portraits just sing in LR2. Nevertheless I owned a legitimate copy and since I was switching everything over to the MAC I contacted PictoColor to transfer my license.

Normally what happens is the manufacturer sends you a password that allows you to download a copy of their software for your new platform. The download doesn’t cost them anything. After all it’s just a simple download and you’ve already paid for the product. So guess what happened when I contacted Pictocolor? I got an email from them saying “their policy” was to add a $49 (US) charge to complete the transfer.

Oh isn’t that nice! The customer pays out another $50 after spending $100. Boy if all businesses worked this way there’d be no recession. Just keep putting your hands into your customer’s wallets. This “policy” is so customer unfriendly that I can’t recommend any of PictoColor’s products until they change this unfriendly way of doing business. It’s a real shame and I wonder if David Ziser who is among the really good guys out there will keep recommending a company that has such a customer-hostile policy.

Time will tell. In the meantime there are other Photoshop plugins out there that I would look it before going with Pictocolor.

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