Yoshi also used an example to talk about consistent income, but what guarantees that a subscriber keeps their subscription running?
"Guarantee" is a legal term that's not really applicable to this situation.
I'm pretty sure you know what this means, but I'll break it down. What assurance do you have that a month to month subscriber can be counted on to support a game into the future? The way he states it makes it sound like he's sure there is no way you'll lose half of your subscribers in a month. It wouldn't have bothered me as much as it did if he hadn't decided to kick the already down SWtoR, perhaps not realizing that they had almost accomplished the very feat he claims isn't going to happen.
But it is human nature not to immediately cancel a service you no longer want if it automatically renews itself.
I cancelled Netflix the day I signed up for it. I used the service and then made the decision whether or not to keep it. Should XIV launch with a free trial that renews automatically, I will either pay with crysta(of which I currently have none registered to my account) as a payment method or I will cancel immediately. Was I wrong in thinking that this was what everyone did to avoid unexpected charges showing up on their account?
Even if I didn't do it for all services, SE's would definitely get the extra scrutiny due to the POL fiasco from FFXI days. I wonder how many thousands of dollars they made double charging people multiple times for a month's service?
That's why in a subscription model, income doesn't really dwindle as fast as on a per-use basis (like in an F2P model). Even if most people really wanted out, it would be some time before everyone who wanted to quit actually took the time to quit, and during that time, most of those subscription dollars would still be coming in. But, if you're not playing an F2P game, you're not buying that F2P game's crap. There's no revenue in that case.
I can't speak for everyone, but you've seen the way I run recurring charge subscription fees. Cancelling service on a Square Enix ID requires 5 steps that can be executed in not so many minutes.
FWIW I would have loved to see Yoshi address this in his post...
"The reason why we are sticking with a subscription model is that people are dumb, lazy or a combination of the two. They can't be bothered to take a few minutes out of their time(read: money) to cancel their subscription regardless of whether or not they feel the service is worth it."
Edited, Jun 27th 2013 6:30am by FilthMcNasty