What Happens When People Don’t Pay Their Developers?

Screen Shot 2013-09-24 at 6.42.24 PMIf you are a client of mine, seriously do not take this the wrong way. I have way more class than this. But, it is pretty funny. So, what happens when you do not pay your web developer? Well, those who may not have so much care go ahead and just take your website down. I have had to do that before, it’s not fun. But this one in particular made it very clear that someone owes some bills to their web developer.


Web Development is an interesting world. The demand for website application developers is extremely high. Programming, designing, and building applications is gravely more difficult than many think. But with so many websites out there, how common websites are, and the ability to learn programming concepts and website development online, a high percentage of people discredit the value associated with developing a website.

Why? Because most do not follow through, they do not understand the entirety of what is involved. A high percentage of the people who surf the web and want or plan to start their own website do not follow through with it. In-fact, I would state that 95% who begin with an idea or more fail. I can tell you that I have started at least 20 websites and got them launched, and failed. It just happens. But I am a Computer Scientist. The number of programmers / designers in the world is far out-weighed by those in professions which are not natural for starting and running a website, so there is quite a curve. And people are not willing to climb a curve, therefore it becomes unknown and blind to the work and skill involved.

Why Else? So many people claim to be a website developer. The web world has grown so enormously that people who are in charge of deciding what content should go on a website, now claim to be a website developer. Many people who understand HTML, tend to also go out saying that they can build applications, but this is not often true. Then you have those who setup Open Source systems by running installer scripts in languages such as PHP. All the sudden, they claim to be a PHP developer. PHP is by far the worst language for people who claim “developer” status. The same goes with Sharepoint. There is so much Sharepoint and PHP out there, the job title of a “developer” dilutes the general consensus of what a true developer is today. In reality, people get confused because they are learning terminology that changes with the growth of the web in general, and terms do not get updated on a blanket slate. Massive discredit and lack of understanding going on here. (Have you ever wondered why there are so many “Architects” around these days? Overuse!!! Same issue there!!)

How many failed projects does it take to learn how to code? Taimur states that it just takes 3 website projects to learn how to program. I have been doing this a long time and I can tell you that it takes far more than 3. In college alone, I was spitting out 3 – 5 apps a semester alone and continued to learn (I was good). I was fortunate to start far earlier than college and have around 15 years of programming experience all together. When you get to the level of concepts over syntax, that’s where you really begin to break yourself out of the normal programmer in the world.

Why do I get so worked up about people not paying their developers? I am one. And I had to learn from my mistakes. I dealt with a media company who racked up $3500 in bills without paying. I am extremely fortunate that I learned this early on. Sherif’s Offices and Court Systems cannot always solve someone who is able to literally run from payments. I’ve see others make fixed price deals for $30,000 over a 3 month period of development who got stuck developing for free for the next 2 years. Could you work for $15,000 a year doing data design and development? Today, I whiteness lawsuits for companies that I take contracts from, where they are getting sued for entire fixed price allotments.

I’ll tell you one thing, as soon as the pay comes into question, my services leave. And I am a very nice guy. We will work out our issues even before it comes to that these days. But some others, there is no mercy. Such as http://thephonespa95.com/, who now has to deal with an embarrassing, yet non-classy home page. But hey, it could be worse.

Pay your web developers. Treat them with respect. They are hard to come by and if they are good, do not be afraid to pay them even more.

Here are a couple of even more intense examples of non-payments:

Example of popular opinion:

About Phillihp Harmon

I'm Phillihp. My name can be spelled the same way forwards and backwards, so can my posts... if you wish. I'm out here exploring, learning, and sharing what I find. This is more for fun and personal growth, I aim to be as consistent as possible, so check back daily!
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