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Humble follows through with plans to increase its cut, reduce charitable share

Following a backlash when it was first announced, Humble takes another go at increasing its own cut at the expense of the charities it supports.

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Humble / Thumbsticks

Following a backlash when it was first announced, Humble takes another go at increasing its own cut at the expense of the charities it supports.

Do you know what I think the best meme is? Distracted boyfriend is great, the “is this?” butterfly is solid, but I reckon it’s that bit from That Mitchell and Webb Look, where they’re dressed in SS uniforms, and it dawns on them that might be the bad guys.

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“Hans,” Mitchell asks, of Webb, “are we the baddies?”

It’s the meme of our age. The baddies, in this instance, are Humble, the charity bundle company, and its corporate overlords, IGN Entertainment, a subsidiary of Ziff Davis.

It might be surprising to learn that Humble – of Humble Bundle fame, that has helped developers and publishers raise millions for charity of the years – could ever be baddies, but in this instance, they might well be.

This all started a few months ago, when Humble announced that “Sliders will be replaced by toggles with defined splits that clearly show what amount of your purchase will support Humble, publishers, and charity. The “Extra to Charity” toggle will triple the split for charity to 15%.”

So basically, the sliders that allowed purchases to give a custom amount – or indeed 100% of the cut – to charity would be removed, and replaced with two defined options:

  • 85% to publishers / 10% to Humble / 5% to charity
  • 80% to publishers / 5% to Humble / 15% to charity

People were… a bit upset about this, to put it mildly, so Humble aborted its plan. But like Dr Claw, the primary antagonist of Inspector Gadget, Humble and IGN Entertainment vowed to get us next time.

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And get us they have, as detailed in another new blog post:

“In mid-July, we’ll be rolling out a new iteration of sliders that creates even more opportunities to support important causes. Rolling out a new iteration of sliders that creates even more opportunities to support important causes. While splits on each bundle will vary,” the blog post continues, “on average there will be a minimum amount for Humble Bundle between 15 – 30%. Sliders will clearly indicate any minimums to customers and the flexibility to adjust donations will be available in every purchase of a bundle. This change comes after ten years of having the option to lower Humble’s percentage to zero.”

So in summary:

  • Sliders will be here to stay
  • Humble’s default cut will be 30%
  • You will have the ability to optionally drop it down to 15% (if you notice/remember to do it)
  • You will no longer have the option to drop Humble’s cut below that (to give a greater share to charity)

That is somehow worse than what you proposed before, Humble? Did you think that what we really wanted was the sliders, but we were happy with you increasing your cut at the expense of the charities? You listened to feedback that you were doing something corporate and evil, and then doubled down and made it even more corporate and evil?

It’s like when a teacher gives you a week’s detention, and every time you talk back, it goes up by a week.

Or, to refer back to that Mitchell and Webb meme:

humble bundle are we the baddies


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Tom is an itinerant freelance technology writer who found a home as an Editor with Thumbsticks. Powered by coffee, RPGs, and local co-op.