When you purchase any of the Adobe CS4 suites and register the product, Adobe gives you a free gift. Incentive to register, I suppose. They had done this in prior versions (I believe starting with CS3-I could be wrong), but they offered fewer options last time around and I ended up choosing a free Adobe font set.
Over the past year I had decided one can indeed have too many fonts, so when prompted to choose my free gift after installing and registering CS4 Master Collection, I chose the two free copies of Layers magazine. What a great opportunity to get some professional introduction to the new tools and features in CS4, right?
Wrong. And really, there are three problems compounded here.
First, the Layers issues which I was emailed (see problem number two) were for July/August (four months old) and September/October (two months old).Â Why give away two issues of a magazine so old that they can't contain any CS4 information? How does this benefit users for the new software they just paid well over $2,000 to purchase? I understand some people might get upset that they didn't get their free gift right away and they have to wait up to two months for the next issue to be released, but they did choose a magazine. And I'd say it is fair to assume that people know they will be waiting for the latest issue to arrive if they choose to order a magazine. Either way, it took Layers (or Adobe) about 3 weeks to even send me an email to "pick up" my digital copies... which were up to four months old. This leads me to my second point.
Second, I received an email from Layers and Adobe saying that my two free issues of Layers were "now available" and I should "pick up the Jul-Aug-08 issue now". Reading through the email it is more trying to get me to subscribe to a fairly expensive magazine (even with the 60% discount) then anything else, but clicking on the pick up link takes you to a third-party digital delivery provider. When I got to the site I was fairly annoyed. If I chose to get a magazine as my free gift, why am I being provided a digital copy? I suppose I missed something when choosing my gift that notified me it would be a digital "download"? Even saying it is a "download" is incorrect, because as far as I can tell you can only view it online and when connected to the internet, without resorting to some hackery anyways.
Third, once I did "download" my digital copies, I was even more surprised to find that they contained no CS4 content, but rather all old CS3 content. So much for that introduction to the new tools and features in CS4 I was hoping for. A table of contents from the 'latest' issue is at the right.
All in all, I probably would have been better off taking the free fonts. Don't make the same mistake I did.