WooGang Club, Is it Legit or a Scam? It’s GPL Baby!

UPDATE:I have recently started having issues with WooGang and some plugins coming through “dirty”. I know that some folk in the comments below have been having similar issues as well. With this in mind I cannot recommend WooGang. I have left this post up as it has become popular. Any other recommendations? Please share in the comments section.

If you have spent anytime with client’s WordPress sites you will be familiar with premium plugins. All the crazy requests; add this functionally, I want my checkout to do that and the like.

You know to manually code these requests will cost more than a plugin and the search begins.

Most plugins on the market can be found free on WordPress and although they work, many are still lite versions or require more than one to get the desired result.

Premium plugins on the other hand vary in price from a few dollars through hundreds for some of WooCommerce’s plugins.

Funny thing about all of this is that WordPress is an open source community and many of these costly plugins are in fact GPL (General Public License). This also includes themes.

If you are not familiar with GPL here is a simple breakdown form Wikipedia:

The GNU General Public License (GNU GPL or GPL) is the most widely used[6] free software license, which guarantees end users (individuals, organizations, companies) the freedoms to run, study, share (copy), and modify the software. Software that allows these rights is called free software and, if the software is copylefted, requires those rights to be retained. The GPL demands both. The license was originally written by Richard Stallman of the Free Software Foundation (FSF) for the GNU project.

In other words, the GPL grants the recipients of a computer program the rights of the Free Software Definition[7] and uses copyleft to ensure the freedoms are preserved whenever the work is distributed, even when the work is changed or added to. The GPL is a copyleft license, which means that derived works can only be distributed under the same license terms. This is in distinction to permissive free software licenses, of which the BSD licenses and the MIT License are the standard examples. GPL was the first copyleft license for general use.

In short, if it is GPL, in theory, you can use, copy, share and do pretty much whatever you like with it, without any worries about getting your ass sued.

So my next question is:

So What the Heck am I Paying For?

This really gets my blood boiling. It’s almost like a master trick plan to make you pay for something that is meant to be available free of charge. I have often paid premium price for some plugins from the good guys at WooThemes only to unzip the pack to see a BIG FAT GPL notice. Fuck!

A quick search online and the usual defensive stance is that you are paying for updates. To purchase the open source code with “x” period of support and updates. The price you are paying is in fact not for the GPL plugin but rather a “right’ to recieve updates and in case you require; support from the plugin developers.

Now, I am PRO getting paid for one’s time, however; this is simply taking the piss. For anyone who is not familiar with GPL this may be like water off a duck’s back, but it feels like a bit of trickery to me.

WooGang- Da Real MVP

In comes the lads from WooGang. Bringing you guilt free savings since like, forever. Yes, I too purchased from them and to be totally honest with you, was scared shitless. After some research about them and consequently, GPL licensing; I quickly realised that not only should I not feel guilty, these lads are doing us all a favour.

 

WooGang-Real-MVP-1024x576

 

 

Ok, so, they charge a small fee. Lets call this nominal as in most cases their services has saved me thousands of dollars on paying for “support & updates” that in most cases I simply don’t need.

Moreover, for a small monthly fee of $15 ongoing, you can keep all your plugins up to date with the latest versions. Now thats a bargain for most of you out there building multiple sites a month.

How do They Get Away with It?

GPL. GPL. GPL. In theory, once one person has paid the price to get a plugin that is licensed under GPL, you can then on sell that exact same plugin for a smaller fee to whomever you want. This could also be provided free of charge if you are so inclined. I am far happier paying WooGang their small $10 fee for the exact same plugin found on WooThemes for over $100.

Keep It Real.

Everyone is trying to make a buck to support themselves and or families. This is normal. I am not against this whatsoever. I am against charging exuberant prices for plugins that should not cost that much. WooGang would not exist today if it weren’t due to the pricing charged by the likes of WooThemes.

Want it to stop, simple, drop the pricing. Even on CodeCanyon (Envato Market), prices are reasonable, support is provided, and everything is transparent.

To wrap it up, support WooGang. No doubt they are in it for the money, however; their pricing is fair, they offer the updates free for a monthly subscription and at the end of the day, we are sort of keeping GPL a little more GPL.

 

Any comments or insights into GPL or your thoughts and experiences with WooGang- please share.

Image above originally thumbnail from YouTube.

 

Have your say!

  • Elisee January 8, 2016, 11:24 pm

    Thanks for the heads up, will be buying something from them soon!:)

    Reply
    • Betty January 7, 2017, 10:48 am

      Beware!!!!! mailchimp GLPChimp resellers I purchased the subscription, uploaded my Woocommerce plugin and couldn’t use it as there is NO Activation Key. So have to do what i was doing in the first place and pay accordingly to it. Cancelled the deception subscription. This after watching a you tube video, which purposely skipped the bit about “The Activation Key”. Sick of these scammers. Going to pay full price so it’s legit, and not get stung down the road!

      Reply
      • buckneri March 17, 2018, 4:17 pm

        there is no activation keys for usage, only for plugin updates. sooo.. yeah.

        Reply
  • Andrew January 13, 2016, 7:16 am

    Thanks for this article, I was wondering how they were so cheap compared to Woothemes, this makes sense now!

    Reply
  • Joe January 29, 2016, 2:24 am

    Their free file woocommerce-subscriptions-1.5.9.zip, gave a positive result on virustotal – Bkav scanner VEXE296.Webshell 20160127

    I dont think this is a false positive.

    Reply
  • Russ February 12, 2016, 11:39 pm

    great! thanks for the info.

    Reply
  • Tyler March 8, 2016, 2:00 am

    It made me think to check all of the plugins that I currently have at my disposal for the GPL notice and found that all of the plugins I wanted to add to my site (which I had available on my dev machine from client sites) was all GPL, so I am now adding all of this GPL code to my site.

    Thanks for the excellent article, this will save me thousands of dollars.

    Reply
  • Cynthia March 18, 2016, 6:02 am

    Thanks, this is just what I am looking for.

    Reply
  • Kristian March 21, 2016, 4:35 pm

    Open source and libre software licenses, such as the GPL, do not mean “free of charge”. The GPL itself encourages charging for GPL software. The GPL only requires that if a copy is provided to someone, access to the source code must also be provided and users have the right to make changes and redistribute it if they wish.

    The only thing in WordPress theme/plugin packages that must be licensed under the GPL is PHP code that interfaces WordPress core code.

    HTML, CSS, JavaScript, images and other assets are not always provided under GPL and may require a separate license from the copyright owner.

    Many plugin authors choose to license everything in the package under GPL to be part of the wider WordPress community. Many of these businesses simply rely on trade name / trademark law to prevent people reselling the plugins under the same name and prevent use of their logos.

    The scary thing is most people don’t understand that using fully GPL-licensed themes on their blog or website means their site HTML/CSS is GPL-licensed and any user who views it on the internet has the right to copy it under the terms of the GPL, because client-side code/content has been “distributed” by the website to the user via their web browser.

    Reply
    • Glen May 1, 2016, 3:38 pm

      I remember reading on the WooThemes website that you must state that their files are from them and you must not hide the logo. That seems to go contrary what you are saying here regarding that.

      Reply
  • FSF March 21, 2016, 5:10 pm

    Free Software Foundation – GNU/GPL – Selling Free Software

    Many people believe that the spirit of the GNU Project is that you should not charge money for distributing copies of software, or that you should charge as little as possible—just enough to cover the cost. This is a misunderstanding.

    Actually, we encourage people who redistribute free software to charge as much as they wish or can. If a license does not permit users to make copies and sell them, it is a nonfree license. If this seems surprising to you, please read on.

    http://www.gnu.org/philosophy/selling.en.html

    Reply
  • Zuhier May 3, 2016, 1:46 am

    I would like to ask. If i didnt subscribe for $15 but i only buy the extension that cost $10. Do i still need to pay monthly for the extension? Or i only need to pay like one time paymnet?

    thanks.

    Reply
  • Loren May 19, 2016, 1:31 pm

    Glad I found this. Was just looking for a woocommerce extension for a client and figured the £70 fee might put them off. But then I found WooGang. It did feel a bit strange as they were only charging £12!! So I thought I’d check it out.

    Thanks so much for reviewing. Going to do a lot more with WooGang now!

    Reply
  • Stefanie May 28, 2016, 10:55 pm

    My experience with WooGang has been terrible. Purchased 3 files and not one of them was working. Two failed to install entirely, and another routed me to Woothemes to purchase a license key. Opened a PayPal dispute to get my money back.

    Reply
  • WooSociety June 14, 2016, 10:01 am

    We also have plugins and extensions from just $5 on our site. Instant delivery, PayPal and Stripe accepted. It’s the perfect solution for your business.

    Reply
  • GPLChimp October 24, 2016, 9:46 am

    Looks like many here are worried about reputation of woogang. Just wanted to drop line here that woogang is now called GPLChimp. When we moved almost 2000 members voluntarily moved their subscription to our new service and that is a biggest proof of trust they have. Its almost three years now and wwe have subscribers who are paying us for more than 30 months now.

    Reply
    • Concerned Citizen October 27, 2016, 10:41 am

      The fact you moved to a new name says it all. Many of your plugins were dirty or corrupt.

      Reply
  • Charlie November 3, 2016, 2:38 am

    Hello everyone,

    I won’t comment on the services of other providers but we offer around 1100 themes and plugins at only $7.99/month or $79/annually. All 100% original files.

    https://www.gplvault.com

    We’re active on Twitter and Facebook and can be contacted via our site if anyone has any pre-sales questions. Look forward to seeing you 🙂

    PS. In fairness I think they changed their name because WOO infringes the trademark of WooCommerce. There were a few of these kinds of sites that had to change their domain names.

    Reply
  • alvin_raj September 30, 2017, 9:34 am

    You could also give it a try for WordPressoft

    Reply
  • vaultpress4a39c0b3d449ee42bfe49ea4fc0ae0c6 June 13, 2018, 8:59 am

    Thanks for the heads up, I have used many of these including woogang. but have found cheapest option, they have same plugins but for only $5. https://gplpro.club

    Reply