Question to all devs: Why no premium/paid plugins or theme components?

Hey guys

this is one for all developers who are actively working on either discourse core or plugins/theme components. I am really curious about this one and I see quite some demand in the field.

How come there are barely any paid or premium (or even freemium) themes or plugins available?

Me personally, I have this huge need for support, additional features, bug fixes and customizations. But the problem is, that all of those can cost a lot of money.

In some cases I have been borderline begging for plugin authors to take my money to fix things.

Currently I see a lot of components here providing insane amounts of value but are not being maintained since the developers don’t make any money from it. Hence it cripples the user experience. It should be an easy sell to provide, maintain and support popular plugins/themes for a monthly/yearly fee to solve common requests and make everyone happy.

In a sort of marketplace I see a win win win win situation for discourse dev team, independent devs, discourse users and the community end users.

  • discourse devs team can create a marketplace
  • independent devs can get paid and make a living
  • discourse users/customers can rely on plugins being fixed/improved with each core release + get support and satisfy their community members
  • end users within the respective communities will get a great experience and stick around in the forums.

Long story short…

My question to all devs: What’s currently hold you back from offering premium features or support plants for your themes or plugins?


My guess? There’s some work to actually setup licensing and taking money. Also when you take money you need to provide support which costs money. Is there profit? Who knows. Probably not initially. Maybe eventually.

And in the meantime it’s not fun having to take orders from paying customers.

Instead build a community of people who depend on something and eventually if there is a product market fit, then and only then launch a support oriented business.

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The main group maintaining plugins is They do not charge for any of their plugins, though they do charge folks for maintaining them. They would be happy to take your money to provide support.

I have a very few plugins that I maintain. I mostly charge people for maintaining their sites, and sometimes that includes maintaining their plugins.

What are the plugins that are providing “insane amounts of value” but not being maintained? If you have a budget and post in #marketplace, I suspect you can find someone willing to fix them.