Authors have abandoned theme - What next?

Hello everyone.

The authors of a popular Wordpress theme, Bimber, have abandoned its development (Bimber - Viral Magazine WordPress Theme by bringthepixel | ThemeForest). They haven’t been responding to comments and a lot of customers who have paid for support aren’t getting any response from the developers.

There have been many, many comments complaining about the bad service but strangely many of them are removed after a few days. I don’t know why Envato allows this to happen, because unwitting customers will buy the theme thinking they’ll get support and updates (as is advertised) and they get neither. Actually this is happening now. If you look at some of the latest comments/reviews, you’ll see people saying stuff like: I just bought this theme, no one has responded to my support ticket for 2 weeks. So it’s unfortunate that customers are losing their money in this way. It’s also unfortunate that the authors abandoned this theme without any warning or advanced notification.

Rather than complaining about the bad service of the developers, I’m wondering if something can be done to help out the community who use this theme. I rely heavily on this theme and as WordPress and other plugins get updated, I worry that the theme will start experiencing more and more bugs.

What can we do in this situation?

Is there a way we can make a call out to other developers who are willing to build upon this existing theme? Can Envato advise anything? What happens with previously abandoned themes?

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Unfortunately, situations like this will appear more and more often. Many elite authors with lots of sales in the past can no longer support themselves from the earnings here. The global economic situation, the pandemic, the long series of unpopular decisions made by Envato, taxes on top of taxes for each product sold lead more and more often to situations like this. It’s like any other business if is no longer sustainable get closed.

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U should maintain that theme for yourself. If u’re talking about Bimber, it’s not hard. That theme is pretty robust, thats true. But it’s not hard to change a lot of stuff inside that theme.

@bringthepixel

When you say @hibby_dibby the authors have abandoned the development of this particular theme, it makes me wonder why they would then updated the theme in August 2022. I understand your comments but at the end of the day the theme was designed and built by someone else.

See this topic here where @charlie4282 makes some excellent points about a similar question:

Thanks for your response 123Simples…

Regarding the theme being abandoned, my assumption is made because there have been many comments & reviews by people who’ve purchased the theme saying they’ve sent support tickets but haven’t had responses in weeks. Generally the theme authors have replied to comments, but now they’ve completely stopped (it’s been over a month).

The strange thing about this is the negative comments and reviews are constantly disappearing. I visit the theme page frequently and there have been MANY negative comments and reviews, but for some reason they keep being deleted. This has been happening for a long time. I don’t know if it’s Envato or the theme authors who are responsible for this, but it is a deceptive practice.

Also thanks for the link to a similar forum post. Will check it out.

I disagree. The theme is only good until you run into bugs, and there are lots of them and more and more every week. Also, the theme is very complex, so setup A might be less buggy than setup B. It’s the dev’s job to help his customers and address these issues. If they are unwilling to do so, the theme should get removed from Envato.

You’ve fallen for their trap, 123simples. It’s a lousy and lazy approach lots of devs use on Envato. One complains about there not being any updates or fixes and the makers then either point to the last update, which was just a useless code push, or quickly address a couple issues to achieve the same.

The update before the August one was in January, and the last one only happened because a lot of anger built up in the comments. They then halfheartedly addressed a couple issue, but have pretty much disappeared since then.

However, the main problem here is twofold, as hibby_dibby has pointed out:

1/ The makers continue making cash off of it, by deleting critical comments and reviews. God knows how. But my guess is they refund the folks complaining and then have them or Envato remove the bad apples.

2/ Despite many complaints, Envato doesn’t seem to care at all. It’s okay if makers want to abandon a theme, but to continue making cash off of it is not. And at the end of the day, Envato is no different from the Bimber folks if they allow this to happen.

Over time, this will only lead to customers losing trust in Envato.

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Totally agree.

I still don’t know what do u want for a 59 bucks. Tell me.
U got a theme. Author abandoned that theme.

For $59 u have a strong core to start learning.
As i told u. Theme is very complex, but easy to maintain.
U can start learning. U and others are website owners.

How someone can own a website without knowledge?
How someone can secure that site without knowledge?
It’s not only about themes and plugins in wordpress.

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I’m sorry, but that goes against the idea of Themeforest. Most folks buying these themes have no interest in becoming coders. Instead, thousands of customers pay a single developer or, in the case of Bimber, a developer team to take care of the theme purchased.

Many customers also constantly renew their support, which ends up being a lot of money for a single theme to handle. And customer questions are anyways mostly the same. If it’s become too complex or burdensome to handle for the devs, they should consider removing the theme or selling it instead of continuously ripping off people.

As for your two questions at the end, that’s no problem nowadays with the right dev support, hosting provider and WP plugins installed. No site out there is a 100% stable and secure and always needs more than one person to handle its many needs.

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Update: At what point does Envato step in when there’s clear discontent from customers? Is there some penalty against authors that don’t deliver on their commitments? Customer buy themes because of what the authors promise.

And for info, I have now moved on from the theme. Given up on it. This is for customers who have bought the theme and were expecting support/updates. The platform should really do something about this because many customers lose out.

Exactly! Too hard to business on Envato at this moment. Haven’t to just for now, it start happen from middle of 2021 until now. A lots of my friends also is elite authors, but they choice left out of Envato to find new other oppoturnity :joy:

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Is Envato ever gonna act on this? If not, they’re just as scammy as Bimber is.

I certainly won’t be buying anything else from the Envato site. I’d rather buy from the developers sites and more developers seem to be setting up their own personal sites for selling their themes. I suppose this kind of work ethic will end up eventually resulting in the demise of Envato if people take the time to read the comments on many advertised themes, plugins etc.

I personally use Bimber, and havent ran into alot of issues, And any i have had in using it i have been able to resolve fairly easily myself. I am not a coder at all, in fact i could be considered a real newbie. Sure support could likely have helped along the way. But i think its been a good learning experience to overcome some issues myself. I would not consider it a scam as people are stating, a “scam” would be taking your money with no product. And thats not the case with this at all. I do understand alot of people want “plug and play” and not have to do much work for themselves i suppose.

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Exactly.

I gave up using the Bimber theme. With 0 support i decided to move away from it myself. I do however use the SNAX plugin that was/is included in the theme and as a standalone plugin. Which is also not being supported. The plugin does work as expected with the exeption of a couple of small bugs. I would love to see the developer update the plugin at least, and if they were to update the theme i would consider moving back to it as it was a great theme

I wish I found this thread before I gave them $59. I can troubleshoot small issues myself but selling a theme with fatal errors should be against Envato’s policy and they should pull the the sellers page. Envato knowingly allowing this to happen on their own site is a terrible business practice!