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Am i hosed?

Discussion in 'BlackHat Lounge' started by dailylotion, Nov 2, 2013.

  1. dailylotion

    dailylotion Newbie

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    An old school chum that, i used to roll with , but , moved away long ago has , been : keeping in touch with me on skype for a couple of years now. He makes Android mobile device games independently , selling them through two cosigners : Google play® , and , Amazon® app store. He roped me into helping him on a recent project of his , in agreement for : a percentage of his earnings from the app in perpetuity. This arrangement was confirmed by email. It is a Halloween pumpkin game, so, it will make a small amount for each year its posted, as search traffic perennially returns to its seasonal keywords. I proposed the idea of : pulling it in early November, and , re posting at the beginning of next October , so , it appears as a new app each year. He didn't seem keen on that, because , he proclaimed that : even bad, outdated , or unpopular apps get an occasional download , and , the more apps/games he can keep on offer , the more prosperous he looks to customers.

    Sadly, i am suspicious that, he is not being honest about the apps sales figures. The first sign of trouble was : I notice , on every google play app page, there is a stat at the bottom called "installs", google play does : automatic installs with download , so , this pretty much says how many sold. On this particular page it does not appear. The lowest threshold to display the stat is : only one install. When i confronted him on this , he claimed : it did not sell one single copy from that cosigner. He also claimed that it only sold a scant few on Amazon, only enough to make my percentage under $1 (USD). Amazon does not display an "installs" on the user page. Installs also don't appear in "app annie" (analytical tracker for detailed mobile app stats).

    I suspect, he is hiding the stat in his own options , and , not being honest with me about the real sales figures to : weasel out paying me a few bucks. While he is an old friend , he seems to want to move off the subject of telling me the excact sales when , i try to bring it up , but , so would i , if things were going so poorly , and , my partner was asking about percentage. I have remembered a few contradictions in his chat from : before we worked together , during collaboration , and , after publish, that , while innocuous in of themselves, added together with : the missing install stat ,and , general vagueness about actual sales, adds to a mounting pile of circumstantial evidence.

    Its hard to tell if he is hosing me or not. It wasn't a strong app. He made it a rush job , so , while his coding was not buggy or anything , the actual content quality wasn't as good as it could have been. To be honest : an unoriginal game without good playability , but , pretty skin, 3-d texturing , and intricate sprites to give it an illusion of its non-existant depth , so , its possible that the game didn't sell.
    However, its hard to swallow that : it didn't sell one cotton picking copy from google last month.

    Thing is : we do have a long history , and , i want to give him the benefit of the doubt. If i was working for a stranger , and , it got like this, I would be demanding dashboard screencaps at this point, but, because of the long standing history , i don't want to come off like a dick. What i just said right there , is , almost verbatim : the cadence of a con man victims story, its always like : they know their being hosed in their core , but , the con man always has some type of leverage that , keeps the mark just barely committed enough to : hope against hope the lies might be real. He is an old friend , but , i would love something concrete to hold him to his word. The agreement email, i have on file is : legally binding , emails have been proved binding by court precedents as contractual. The email gives me little leverage to keep him honest if : i can't verify his sales , and he knows it. I am far from talking to lawyers for these small potatoes , and , he knows that too.

    Am i hosed or not? Is there a tactful and polite way i can ask for sales record documentation?
    Is there a different analytical tool that i could use to find the actual downloads history on my own?
    Would the cosigners provide download statistics if : i inquired as an interested party?
     
  2. dailylotion

    dailylotion Newbie

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    Edit : Never mind now. I am convinced i wasn't hosed. I am now resigned to think : the operation was a bust , due to , introducing a barely passable product in a highly saturated market , mixed with my failure to promote it well. Me and this other person are still on good terms , and , have chalked this up as a learning experience.
     
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  3. MafiaBoss

    MafiaBoss Elite Member

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    learn something from this, and move on, this is not end of the world.
     
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  4. bananaman5000

    bananaman5000 Regular Member

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    yeah, games are hard a shit to make succeed. there's just too much competition unless you've got some money to market and make the game amazing. i built one for android, spent 2 months working every day, makes about .20c per day
     
  5. dailylotion

    dailylotion Newbie

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    yes , exactly. He was keeping us at a breakneck pace to : create a working stable game in under 5 days. We succeeded in that , however , the hurried assembly showed in the finished product ,and , it tanked against heavy competition.

    Today : i have since moved on to doing projects more tailored to my unique skill sets.

    The game guy , i am happy to say : is putting more time into his next game. He is also considering : getting sponsor advertising for his website , as well as , having some of the lesser hurried games being hosted for free on the site , and hosting paid downloads of his better games.

    Before he only had his site set up with only hyperlinks to his consignors , making it kind of a pointless exercise to promote to a page that only leads directly back to g-play.
     
  6. Jonny Quick

    Jonny Quick BANNED BANNED

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    This is not about an app. This is about how you feel about a friend, and your concern that he is willing to sacrifice the foundation of your friendship for the sake of a few inconsequential dollars. Conversely, it is also about your suspicions, and whether or not they say something about him, or something about you.

    The question is which is the most appropriate area to pay attention to. Is this a "him problem" or a "you problem". The best way to find out is approach it much in the same way that you already have, but only with a clearer understanding of what your purpose is. I think, initially you thought it was about money, and that is the thing you need to let go of. Now, it's about whether or not you can trust him. It's about the NEXT app, the next "whatever", and it's also about who he is, and therefore who he is to you.

    Start again. Ask the basic questions and keep on the question until you see him break one way or the other. He will either respect your reasonable request and give you whatever information that you need, or clearly demonstrate that he has something to hide, which is a statement that you need to pay attention to. You don't need ALL the truth, as many people falsely believe. You just need enough of the truth so that you can make a reasonably good decision in order to do what's best for yourself.

    That will be 5 cents.

    [​IMG]
     
  7. dailylotion

    dailylotion Newbie

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    Well , yes , i got proper analytic data from him eventually , hence the update after OP.
    My entitled cut came out to be less than $10 (usd ) , i am not going to bother him to pay such a piddly amount. We agreed if somehow the app does better over time , he could pay me when a decent amount was accumulated.

    As for whether its a : him problem ,or , a me problem , well , the thing is : i have a skeptical nature and jump to conclusions , although i have learned not to jump to rash action based on these initial thoughts. I am the kind of person , when , i can't find underwear in my underwear drawer , i think : "some one has stolen my underwear"

    As for game guy , well , he has a diagnosed mental condition , and , tends to self medicate with alcohol. Sometimes he is flying right , and , other times : he is just flying.
    I was actually concerned about setting him off into his irresponsible mode if : i pushed too hard for verifications , and , concerned he might have made a decision on a greasy course of action during a dark period.
     
  8. Jonny Quick

    Jonny Quick BANNED BANNED

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    His deficits are a reflection of your own. You choose him for reasons. There is always balance to the equation. You owe me 10 cents now.