March 25, 2023

Right this moment I bought an e mail titled ‘Your Manuscript Account Steadiness’ which stated:

Your Manuscript account is now in arrears within the quantity of $31.25.

Use this hyperlink to specify a bank card on your account and we are going to use it to settle your steadiness:


You possibly can prepay for a yr prematurely utilizing a examine, company buy order, or bank card:*****


FogBugz Buyer Success
[email protected]

Fogbugz was a web based bugtracker developed by the a lot revered Fog Creek Software program. They bought it some years in the past when their firm headed off into the stratosphere (Stackoverflow, Trello and so on). I feel I might need had a free Fogbugz account 10+ years in the past. I requested round on Twitter and fairly a couple of folks appear to have bought the very same e mail. It seems that:

  • The venerable FogBugz software was just lately bought on to and they look like making an attempt to demand cash from anybody who ever used FogBugz. Which is prone to be 1000’s of individuals.
  • IgniteTech describe themselves as “The place software program goes to stay”, however “The place software program goes to die” is perhaps a greater description.
  • FogBugz was renamed to ‘Manuscript’ sooner or later.

I attempted replying to the e-mail, telling them in no unsure phrases that they weren’t going to get a penny from me. That is the reply I bought:


In an effort to offer a greater expertise to our current clients, we're consolidating our e mail assist channel into our Assist-Middle. 

In case you want technical assist for FogBugz it is possible for you to to submit a case from our 'FogBugz Help Web page'. 

Replies made to this mailbox are routed to an unmanaged mailbox. 

Please don't reply to this message. 

Thanks, FogBugz Help Workforce

It’s unhappy to see somebody utilizing darkish enterprise practices to attempt to wring a few cents from the corpse of a as soon as much-respected product. Does Joel Spolsky know? I don’t assume he’d be impressed.

** Replace 24-Sep-2022 **

I bought this e mail late on the twenty second:

Pricey FogBugz Person,

Mea culpa — sincerely.

We’ve grow to be properly conscious of the maelstrom of concern and feedback brought on by a collection of emails that a few of you acquired, however to clarify, we have been simply as stunned as you when a number of emails have been despatched. Our authentic and solely supposed e mail, which was managed by people, was to tell you that the “free,” non-expiring model of FogBugz is being phased out on October 17, 2022. Moreover, we wished to give you the choice to proceed utilizing FogBugz by updating your account to a paid subscription. This was your entire, deliberate effort.

Nonetheless, as soon as we up to date the accounts that had been recognized as free and non-expiring within the inner FogBugz accounting system, the software program routinely generated a kind e mail, notifying you that we had summarily transformed you to a paid account, and worse, really triggering assortment/dunning notices to some. This was unintended and isn't correct. Sure, we’ve owned the software program for a while and will know all the nooks and crannies by now. We don’t know if this was a nook or a cranny, but it surely determined to behave by itself. Fact. It’s embarrassing, and we’d react the identical manner as lots of you've gotten. So this e mail is to set the document straight.

We don't routinely cost any buyer for utilization of the software program except a subscription has been expressly elected, regardless of what the misguided auto-email acknowledged.

Right here’s what it is advisable know:

    All free subscriptions for FogBugz will expire on Oct. 17, 2022. In case your FogBugz subscription has already expired, and you don't want to proceed utilizing FogBugz, you don’t must take any additional motion. Your information shall be deleted from the system; you'll not be billed and you'll obtain no additional emails from both the nook or the cranny.

    If you happen to have been erroneously charged as a result of your free account nonetheless had your bank card on file (e.g. some customers have been on paid accounts and had downgraded), we are going to guarantee that you're promptly refunded. Please use the e-mail [email protected] if in case you have not seen the refund already posted.

    Regardless of this mishap, we hope the advantages of the software program will encourage you to proceed. In case your FogBugz free-account subscription is presently lively, and also you want to proceed as a subscriber, please authorize your paid subscription by following these directions.

    Please notice: While you improve, your account will qualify for 50% off any subscription tier.

    If you happen to want any help whereas upgrading, please contact us at

We sincerely apologize for the confusion that was precipitated and are working onerous behind the scenes to resolve all points associated to this motion.


The (humbled) FogBugz Workforce

So Fogbugz grew to become sentient and began demanding cash? And this primary occurred at least a week ago, however the brand new homeowners didn’t discover and a complete load of emails went out days later (together with the one I bought a number of days after the primary publish on HN)? Hmm.