Sometimes I feel like a curmudgeon for sticking to free software tools, and Figma was a hit even among the open source design crowd.

Full solidarity to the design colleagues who will now have enough anxiety about how far their workflows will be screwed.

That said, this is why you can't compromise: there are no "nice" flavors of proprietary software (remember Minecraft).

(context: )

and if you're affected, PLEASE check out PenPot, it's a very very very good free software alternative!

(using it for all my professional UI work for ~1 year, and am a very happy user)

we free software designers get preciously few opportunities like this, so please let me gloat a bit


maybe it's because I'm an old, but it seems not rare at all

that's maybe why any "I told you so" I'm likely to put out there comes with more sorrow than glee

@rlafuente The most important point to make regarding #FOSS vs #Proprietary software ... you, as a User, can participate!!:)

@rlafuente are you running your own penpot server or you use their services?

@rlafuente This is what big tech does now. Disruption of their monopolies on the horizon? Let’s acquire those pesky challengers and eat them alive.

And that’s when the founders of those alternatives receive an offer they can’t refuse.

@judeswae Interesting that you mention "now" -- to me, this neatly echoes Adobe's acquisition of Macromedia 17 years ago. Which was the spark that motivated our switch to free software.

Also, it always seemed to me that "Get acquired" is the unwritten bullet point in the mission/vision pages in any of these projects/startups. If you're taking VC money, it's pretty much the only way out for areas where you can't carve a massive market (like design)

@rlafuente True. Acquisition to stifle competition is not new. Microsoft is a famous example of the embrace, extend, and extinguish model. But I think what is more pernicious today is that the big players have now so much power due to their scale and reach that they can make offers you can’t refuse as in: either you sell to us or we copy you and you die.

I feel that this was not necessarily so present before. ./..

@rlafuente ../.. We have seen acquisitions in tech for a long time. Although in the case of Adobe and MM, it feels to me that it was more a merge than acquisition.

The difference with before is that today's monopolies are incapable of innovation. They can only buy new things to survive.

@judeswae Completely agree with you! I didn't think of the angle of copying as blackmail, fits perfectly.

The other day I was thinking we should drop EEE as a framework to criticise big tech in light of what you're describing.

@rlafuente This article might shine some light on the deal, from a somewhat Adobe favorable perspective. (Not that I agree with or endorse this point of view, but interesting nonetheless)

@judeswae @rlafuente indeed : Adobe could buy Figma because it has gained more money theses last year : not by making better products but by charging more cloud constrained users ... 👍

@rlafuente @judeswae *points at the entire "open source" DevOps space*

@benis That's the spirit!

...but in case this is not snark but a genuine question, here:

>Figma has become a growing competitor to Adobe XD

@rlafuente it absolutely sucks. Also imagine what good you could do with $20 billion.

@sprkwd I know right, such a number kind of overloads any perception of magnitude

and even then, the amount is just one of the many interesting details of this story

@rlafuente Well, that sucks.

I guess… at least they made Adobe pay handsomely to take them out as competitors. $20 billion, for a company that's only 10 years old? That's impressive.

And it's a hell of an incentive for others to try and compete with Adobe—best case, you beat them. Worst case, you just *threaten* them and cash out as a multibillionaire. Puts a big target on their backs.

Wonder how the fine folks at Affinity are doing? 😒 I hope not too tempted.

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