California-based software giant Adobe Inc. -- best known for its array of designer tools like Photoshop and Illustrator -- has decided to cancel all of its Venezuelan customers. Adobe informed its clients in e-mails sent this week that, later this month, all subscriptions in Venezuela will be canceled without refund.
The sofware company has been switching to a subscription-based business model, which means clients pay regular fees to keep using its products rather than make a one-time purchase and own them. Now, Adobe says it cannot conintue to offer its services in the South American country because President Donald Trump issued an executive order which essentially bans almost all transactions between the two nations.
Observers say that Adobe executives apparently decided they would rather lose the relatively small Venezuelan market than take the risk of sending high-paid corporate lawyers to explain to the U.S. Treasury why some clerk in Caracas managed to use Photoshop to create pics telling Trump to get his hands off the country.
Venezuelans using Adobe’s cloud services have until October 28th to download their files before their accounts are deleted. And no one should expect any refunds; Adobe says paying them back would violate government policy, too. Once the purge of subscriptions is done, no Adobe products will be legally available to anyone in Venezuela, not even free ones.
The US routinely uses economic sanctions against nations it doesn’t like, some of them kept in place for decades. Venezuela has come under increased sanctions pressure this year as the Trump administration launched a so far unsuccessful campaign to replace Maduro with a leader of its choice.
Computer experts say that Adobe’s withdrawal will probably result in some increase in software piracy in Venezuela, but will make it difficult to fully utilize computer programming.
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