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Cricut Backs Off Plan For Subscription Fees After Backlash From Community

Cricut's CEO wrote a statement responding to the backlash from the cosplay and crafter's community.
Cricut Maker Machine
Image Courtesy Jedimanda

The CEO of Cricut has since issued a statement about the December 31, 2021 concerns. Read the statement from March 18th to learn more.

Last week, the home cutting plotter company Cricut came out with big news about having members pay a monthly subscription fee in order to use the Design Space app. The change originally was going to force users who didn't want to pay the subscription fee only 20 personal image/pattern uploads. Now, after major backlash from both the cosplay and crafting communities online, Cricut has come forward with a statement from the CEO.

The letter reads:

"Dear Cricut Members,

One of our core values is community — we’re listening, and we took your feedback to heart. The foundation of our Cricut community is one of integrity, respect, and trust. It is clear that, in this instance, we did not understand the full impact of our recent decision on our current members and their machines. We apologize.

Here’s how we’ll move forward.

We will continue to allow an unlimited number of personal image and pattern uploads for members with a Cricut account registered and activated with a cutting machine before December 31, 2021. This benefit will continue for the lifetime of your use of these machines.

Machine Resales or Transfers

We welcome new members to the Cricut community whether they purchase a new or pre-owned machine. If a machine is resold or transferred to a new user, the new user must set up their own Cricut account. As long as the new user creates their account and connects the machine to their account before December 31, 2021, we will grant the benefit of an unlimited number of uploads to the new user for the lifetime of their use of the machine.

Schools and Education Maker Spaces

We understand that teachers, schools, and other education maker spaces have different needs for ongoing user account creation. While we don’t have anything to share right now — and nothing will change before December 31, 2021 — we are looking at ways to address these ongoing needs and their relation to image uploads.

Future

We will continue to explore affordable ways for our future users who register machines after December 31, 2021 to allow an unlimited number of personal image and pattern uploads.

Of course, paid Cricut Access subscribers will continue to enjoy an unlimited number of uploads along with the other subscriber benefits. We will also continue to invest in our content, software, and value for all our members."

Scoring EVA Foam with Cricut
Cricut machine scoring EVA foam.

Some members of the communities sighed in relief from the letter as it renounced their original plans of having the community pay the subscription in order to use the machine. The letter also addressed the issues of reselling the machines, which had originally been reported as being unable to transfer or resell a Cricut as it would be deactivated for the new owner.

There are, however, many still in the community who are both angry and concerned over the company's new directions. Members of both the Replica Prop Forum and SheProp Community voiced their displeasure over Cricut's statement, saying that the letter is only delaying future backlash.

"Smart of them but maybe not in the long run. Won’t be buying another one that requires net access to operate," a member of the RPF wrote. Another member of the SheProp Community commented, "It's a start but still not good enough at all until they axe the entire idea. How can their core value possibly be community when they are essentially creating access barriers to a huge portion of said community?"

Scoring EVA Foam with Cricut
The Design Space app being used to create scoring marks on EVA foam.

Many members of the cosplay community think that Cricut is only delaying the inevitable. The letter states that Cricut "will continue to allow an unlimited number of personal image and pattern uploads for members with a Cricut account registered and activated with a cutting machine before December 31, 2021." It also wrote, "As long as the new user creates their account and connects the machine to their account before December 31, 2021, we will grant the benefit of an unlimited number of uploads to the new user for the lifetime of their use of the machine."

The December 31, 2021 date has made some crafters and cosplayers speculate on Cricut's future. Some SheProp members believe that Cricut is helping current Cricut owners, while driving away future owners after the December 31 date. Others also worried about the possibility of their machines breaking after the date and being forced to buy a machine that will then require them to pay for the subscription.

"It's still frustrating that they're doing that to future customers," a member of the SheProp Community wrote. "The biggest noise I heard was over the fact that it was free at the time of purchase and should continue to be honored as such."

We will continue to update this article and previous articles on Cricut as more statements from the company are published.

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About the Author

Kelsey Endter avatar

Kelsey Endter

Editor-in-chief

Kelsey started her cosplay adventure at a small convention outside Sacramento in 2011. Since then, she has been featured on major websites such as IMDb and Variety Magazine, and worked with companies like Besame Cosmetics featuring Disney & Marvel makeup products. Her passion for cosplay and love of the community brought her to join Cosplay Central as Editor-in-Chief in 2020. In her spare time she’s usually seen playing with her dog and scouting the next best photoshoot location for her cosplays.

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