More Detail on Removed Themes Please!

Hi all,

More and more these days I am finding when I want to purchase a theme I have used previously, I find a message saying:

This item is no longer available

For example the Zephyr theme: http://themeforest.net/item/zephyr-material-design-theme/9865647

I’ve checked the information page and it simply says the problem could be ‘any one of the following’ which really doesn’t help. This raises the following questions:

Do I go ahead and start building a website based on that theme?
Is the author simply stopping its development (so there will likely be no new updates, making it unusable)?
Is there a security problem with the previous version and so I should hold-off using it and if so, what do I do about previous websites using it?

Rather than just a blanket “Y’all can’t git this no’more” banner, how about a bit more info pls!

Bob

I don’t believe it’s that envato do not want to be able to give more info but the reason it works like it does is that envato do not own the copyright on any of the files for sale here - authors do.

This is how/why the marketplace offers as much quality/quantity as it does over any of the competition.

However at the same time it means that authors have the right to remove their files as they wish and they are entitled to their privacy if they do not want to disclose why this is e.g. copyright, unable to support further etc.

As it happens, contrary to the bashing the new support policy took, it does now give buyers 6 months peace of mind during which time (unless the author explicitly does not support the file from the start) the author is obligated to help and support at least at a basic level.

I agree it is frustrating and at least if it were for copyright issues it would be good to know about it, however we buy ‘as is’ and it is one of the risks we take when buying a full website for less than the cost of an hour with a decent agency in most places.

Hi Charlie,

I’ll be honest other than this one bugbear, I’ve actually found the entire envato platform to be fantastic, including the support.

I completely agree that authors are entitled to their privacy and concur that envato doesn’t own the copyright (though not sure of the relevancy of that) but I submit that in most cases, the reason is most likely known and I can’t imagine any reason why authors would want to withhold a decision to remove a product from the marketplace (its their decision after all). All the more, I would think authors would be very eager to let people know when a suspension is a temporary one so that potential customers would be more inclined to wait than go elsewhere.

In summary, I’m not saying it should be mandatory that a reason be given but simply that the the option be there to do so.

I do see your points but I wonder how easy it would be to implement?

  • Authors do not have access to contact details for buyers - would envato send an email to people alerting them that file shad been taken down permanently/temporarily?

  • Would there we a drop down choice or similar for authors that adds a message to the download in buyer dashboard that says ‘full removed’ or ‘temporarily taken down’ - what would happen if the author said it’s temporary but then never put it back? How would that be enforced?

  • I agree completely that in the case of temporary removal most authors would want to updates buyers but again - How - if they don;t have contact info? Where - if the item page is down?

The relevancy of copyright as files do not belong to envato they cannot enforce transparency on why files are removed, support the files themselves etc.

I imagine if you had a good way in which to manage removed files envato would be more than happy to hear it.

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Hi Charlie,

Thanks again for your response

As a programmer I expect this would be very easy to implement. There is clearly already a mechanism in place for assigning a status to themes, all I’m suggesting is to expand this. To address your points;

  • Authors do not have access to contact details for buyers - would envato send an email to people alerting them that file shad been taken down permanently/temporarily?
    Not sure why authors would need the contact details? All I’m suggesting is that the theme page doesn’t just say “This item is no longer available” but gives a little more details (based on which status was given).

  • Would there we a drop down choice or similar for authors that adds a message to the download in buyer dashboard that says ‘full removed’ or 'temporarily taken down’
    Exactly

  • What would happen if the author said it’s temporary but then never put it back? How would that be enforced?
    Very easily - a simple expiry date on temporary statuses when they are set could have them change to the current message if they are not available within the threshold (again, programatically all simple stuff).

  • I agree completely that in the case of temporary removal most authors would want to updates buyers but again - How - if they don;t have contact info? Where - if the item page is down?
    The page isn’t down (as per my example), it has a message on it - I’m just suggesting a bit more detail in that message?

  • The relevancy of copyright as files do not belong to envato they cannot enforce transparency on why files are removed, support the files themselves etc.
    Enforcing transparency or information would be a contractual issue, not copyright but again, I’m not suggesting they enforce anything or support the files - just that the option is available.

Also bear in mind that - as per the message - themes can be taken down by envato, in which case they clearly know the reason and so could tell us (if it was security related especially).

Apologies if I’m not understanding your comments fully, I’m just giving my two cents from the perspective of an end-user and a programmer/database architect. It may well be that this is a worthless feature, all I know is that it would be useful for me to know if a theme is likely to return or be gone forever.

Bob

P.S. Happy New Year BTW

Happy New Year.

I do agree with you esp. that it would be useful to know one way or the other (who knows maybe they will consider it!).

Again in no way a criticism of your ideas, (speaking as someone who has bought more than most), I am sure there is a good reason as to why it is not done yet.

Quite often changes envato do/don’t implement are the best of a non-ideal situation.

With so many international rules to consider, as well as a huge variation in user expectation, expertise (and unfortunately in some cases common sense!), even when technically easy, it is near on impossible for them to please everyone.

Envato try to avoid handing control wherever possible (for obvious reasons), again to benefit buyers and authors as far as possible. e.g. This was a major reason for the new support policies.

I imagine ‘temporary removals’ are a far smaller % than full removals and would expect that the lack of updates is simply due to authors having no obligation to explain themselves and to avoid further confusion.

You have some sensible ideas and there’s no harm in sending them to envato.

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