The membership plugin Your Members has announced that they are ceasing operations. Your Members, which has been around since 2008, was one of the early successful commercial plugins in the membership space. The tale of the plugin’s demise is an interesting one because it has more to do with development than anything else.
We started work on YM13 early this year and it became clear the new version wasn’t going to work with our current codebase. Indeed it reached the stage where even little changes are causing massive issues. So in August it was decided that we needed to make YM13 the last release on the current codebase and start on YMv2. I was rereading the blog posts that are sitting in drafts explaining where we were going and why, we never published them.
It became clear it was just not financially feasible to build YMv2 we estimated it was 6 to 9 months work to do what we wanted to do properly and to do it we need to do it properly. We also believe we can’t continue to support and update the existing codebase.
While the developers of Your Members received offers to be purchased, they declined them as they didn’t feel the buyer would provide the community with genuine support and were after their email list instead. Thus, it was decided that Your Members be withdrawn from the market and would no longer be for sale.
One of the unique aspects of Your Members is that it contained a sunset clause. Now that the plugin has been withdrawn from the market, that clause has been invoked meaning everything in the Your Members download, including assets are available under the GPL license. Prior to closing, Your Members operated under a split license with the PHP licensed under the GPL and all other files under a different license. The plugin as well as the documentation will now live on Github.
Is This The Way To Close a Business?
It’s disappointing to see any business fold but I have to hand it to the folks behind Your Members. They are making everything open source and laying the ground work for anyone else who wants to try to pick up where they left off. How do you feel about the way they closed up shop?