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Corel users weren’t the professional graphic designers who constituted the market for quality fonts at that time.
Here are the freebies which were bundled with Illustrator in 1993.
Perhaps it was a response to other players (including Apple), but I suspect that the applications departments at Adobe didn’t realize they were negatively impacting the type department, and were enthralled by the idea that suddenly they no longer had to cram their apps onto floppies, but had CDs with lots of empty space on them, and that filling it with free fonts would enhance the user experience.
I read through the entire thread before running into the last three posts from Nick and Thomas that say what I've thought for some time now.
As a graphic designer myself, I work with, hire and have lots of friends who are also graphic designers. They seldom specifically buy fonts, yet every last one of them has a collection that often amounts to hundreds or thousand of fonts they've picked up over the years.
It's usually a rag-tag assortment of old Type 1 stuff and whatever came with their computers or their software programs or was "borrowed" from their last jobs where fonts were traded with little regard for piracy issues. When they need something different from what they already have, they head to a free download site and get something that works for the project at hand.
As far as these designers are concerned, font are (or should be) free. Quality to them means whatever looks OK at the moment and successfully makes it through the output RIP. Since actually buying fonts means haggling with their employer or passing along the costs to clients, it's easier to use what they already have or can round up for free (legally or otherwise).
It's not all that different from the music recording business — why spend $10 for a CD with only nine or ten songs when everything you want is a few seconds away on Spotify for only $10 per month? I guess the bottom line is I'm not at all surprised that font prices are dropping. Sadly, I'm surprised that any of us are still able to make anything but pocket change from the online font distributors.
Whatever is painless to steal, quickly descends in value to the point that it is assumed they are free. We can hope that enough customers still view type with value greater than "whatever looks OK". Now only if things like housing, food, medical care, transportation, etc.., would catch up to the depleted value of "fonts", we might all still be able to live from our work.
I’m not quite so pessimistic.
Having worked as an art director with some appreciation for type, I would often find it very difficult to find the typeface that was just right for a job.
And that is why I would licence a new one.
Also, one comes to realize that the original is better than the clones, and some typefaces just are quite unique.
Others, new, just seem right for the time.
Also, bear in mind that many designers don’t like to cheat, and many work for businesses that play it straight with properly licensed software, because they are concerned about the legal ramifications of piracy, as well as bug issues.
I've read the entire thread, and wanted to share my thoughts on the subject.
I understand that selling deeply discounted products in volume works great for MyFonts, but I believe that it devalues the work of the designer and could eventually hurt the entire font business. I do not blame MyFonts for doing so, it is a legitimate business model, but I think it may not be best suited for everyone (although some designers obviously benefit from it, at least for a while). I have noticed a steady decline in sales on MyFonts since 2013, and it is obvious that the model they have been promoting in the past few years favors something different from what I have to offer. I guess I'll just have to live with that, and try to explore other options for my product. I believe that through hard work, persistence and dedication you can build your brand reputation slowly, and customers will respect that. Joining like-minded foundries with similar quality standards in order to promote and sell fonts seems like a good way to succeed.
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