An Innovative Freemium Model–Use Green As An Excuse To Weed Out Free User

I have been a regular user of Wordweb for the last few years – the product comes as a handy tool (with minimal memory footprint) to get to know meaning of a word (and doubles as thesaurus+word finder).
Today, I noticed a screen on the Wordweb that asks you a really funny question (good that they didn’t launch this on April 1st).


Ofcourse I chose the last option (why lie?) and this is what I ended up with:


That is, unlimited free use of the program is only available to people who fly very little!

And here is why:

WordWeb free version may be used indefinitely only by people who take at most two commercial flights (not more than one return flight) in any 12 month period. People who fly more than this need to purchase the Pro version if they wish to continue to use it after a 30-day trial period.

Global greenhouse gas emissions are currently around 5 tonnes of carbon dioxide per person per year, and probably need to be reduced by at least 80% have a good chance of avoiding dangerous warming. Most computer users are responsible for far more emissions than is sustainable. For example two short-medium distance return flights can be equivalent to over 1 tonne of emissions1: more than an average person can safely emit over an entire year.[from Wordweb licensing page]

So in essence, the company is taking a much higher position (i.e. Green/Environment Friendly] to drive users to transition to pro version.

Don’t you think this is a damn cool strategy to weed out free users – assuming Wordweb hasn’t seen significant conversion to pro and a time has come in the company to really define the future plans/call it quits? After all, beyond a certain point you’d just give up on free users and say “F.O” to them?

What’s your opinion on this strategy?

PS: You can still make the free version work with a simple hack, but I leave that to you to find out.

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