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Monday, April 9, 2018

Sympathy for Padlet

Last week when Padlet's founder and CEO Nitesh Goel announced the changes to Padlet's pricing model the online ed tech community was upset. Some of the Tweets and Facebook posts that I saw about it were a bit harsh to say the least. I'm sure that Nitesh saw much worse in his inbox than I saw online. For the record, I understand why Nitesh had to make the changes, I support his decision, and I'm actually surprised that he didn't do it earlier. Read Nitesh's full statement on the changes right here and you might be on his side too.

I can tell you from first-hand experience that running a mostly free service is expensive and often thankless. I spent over $12,000 last year to keep Free Technology for Teachers running. And every time that I hosted a free webinar last year I got complaints about everything from the scheduling to the requirement to enter an email address (ironically, that complaint was emailed to me). I can only imagine the email that Padlet gets from users of the free plan.

Padlet is a team of six dedicated people. You might be surprised to learn that many of your favorite ed tech services are run by similar size teams. In almost every case they're dedicated people who want to do the best for their customers. They care, but running a service that is mostly free is expensive and they have bills to pay just like the rest of us. So before you send your angry Tweet to Padlet, please remember that they're nice people who are just trying to do their best like the rest of us.