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Re: [board-discuss] UPDATED Draft Marketing Plan 2020-2025


Hi Uwe,

I'm not a marketing strategist and the plan is a draft of an idea that
you and many others are shaping to get the best results for all.

Having said that I'll try to engage and see if we can get some clearer
ideas about it.

On 09/07/2020 14:31, Uwe Altmann wrote:
Hi all

Am 18.06.20 um 11:25 schrieb Italo Vignoli:
The draft presentation is available online on TDF Nextcloud:
https://nextcloud.documentfoundation.org/s/jzryGw7XDkJadmo

Please focus on the overall strategy and not on specific details, as
details can be tweaked to reach a wider consensus.
Slide 12
"• Thanks to the combined efforts of the entire project, with contributions from community and 
ecosystem, we have released LibreOffice for desktop, online and mobile
• We are proud of being recognized by the LibreOffice brand name, which represents the common 
asset for community and ecosystem members (with a large number of people being active in both 
areas)"

So it is understood that "community" and "ecosystem" are basically two different things.
(c.f. also slide 22: "Relationships between ecosystem and community are not ideal...")
They are 2 complementary and often overlapping groups of people and
entities.

We are all part of the same community but while the Community is mostly
referring to the people that are part of it the ecosystem refers to the
entities/companies that are actively contributing to the Project,
mostly, in terms of code and skills.

Slide 13:
And there is also a "LibreOffice Project" - a third different thing (an "umbrella brand name")? 
An this "umbrella brand name" "...will communicate with one voice,to make it easier for users 
..." - also a communicating brand name? Like a bigmouth brass  ? Honestly: Who will be the entity 
behind the brand name which is the sender of the message?
As it's sometimes difficult to explain the overlap between the Community
and the ecosystem it may be easier to call it LibreOffice Project of
which the Community and the ecosystem are a subset. So we are all
contributing to the LibreOffice Project as individuals, as employees in
the ecosystem and often both.

Slide 14
This shall be explained by a graphic. This graphic tells us that the entity called "LibreOffice 
Community" consists of the intersecting set of "LibreOffice volunteers" at the one hand and 
"LibreOffice Ecosystem" at the other hand;. All three together combine to the "LibreOffice 
Project".
Some remarks on this:
1.  So a volunteer not engaged in the ecosystem cannot be a part of the community, but of the 
project. On the other hand are some parts of the ecosystem are not part of the community, but of 
the Project. (...and then talking there with one voice?)
2. Was looking for TDF - didn't find.

(Personal remark: IMHO this graphic representation should be deleted immediately and thoroughly 
been rethought of - and surely not at all solely by marketing people, because this is far beyond 
their scope.)
It's probably not the clearest graphic representation but thanks to your
remarks it will be deleted/improved.
There are many ways people can and do contribute to the LibreOffice
project, should a "Volunteers" subset be created or just be part of the
Community? That's a good question.

You invested a lot in LibreOffice and you feel part of the Community, do
you think that others that maybe are less engaged should be called
Volunteers, members of the Community, something else?


Slide 15 and 16
These two are a slap into the face of many of the community members. It is made clear that only 
contributions to the source code are counted - but outlined as "Community the last two years - 
community by numbers". Perhaps the authors should rehearse the regulations of membership of the 
TDF and what is considered as contribution there - and correct their metrics then accordingly in 
a hurry. For instance, I never contributed one line of code into the repository - so I'm not 
contributing? In that metrics surely not. With Italo or Mike S., I'm not that sure  .
The title of the slides should probably state that they talk about code
contributions.


Slide 19 and 20
Sense, use and message seems hidden into a deep dark hole for me - especially for a 
communications concept of LibreOffice (I got my problems with the label "marketing Plan", because 
marketing in a nutshell cares of customer requirements [1]- what this concept does not at all so 
far)
True, maybe we should call it Manifesto? Something else?


And then, coming to the core:
Slide 25

"Finding the right balance between the free product and the enterprise supported product"

This seems to be the utmost concern of the paper. But:
It can not be neither the task of the community nor the TDF to do so. Why? At first hand just 
because they are not able to because they don't have any influence on the enterprise supported 
product. So every  attempt will be fairly unfair because only the free product will have to 
adjust then.
As a reaction on this unbalanced situation we will see attempts to gain some influence on the 
enterprise supported product (i.e. via trademark license) which will increase the discord. No one 
is in need of this. This balance has to be found another way - and the TDf has some means for 
that, i.e. the Advisory Board, which in my perception is the place where the ecosystem meets 
(maybe I'm wrong?).
First thing to clarify: TDF is not going to publish any Enterprise product.

The members of the ecosystem have their own LibreOffice based offering
and services. TDF does not get involved in those.
Some are already publishing LibreOffice based products with their own
brand, it's their right and we pose no restrictions at present.
TM licences are under review and that would be part of another consultation.
We'll have another consultation also in relation to how organisations
will be considered part of the ecosystem and what they will need to
contribute back.

LibreOffice does not need to adjust to the ecosystem, the contrary is
probably true and we have to find the right balance for all.


Slide 28
Right start - but where it leads us? No requirements analyzed. Could also be "blue users", "green 
users" etc.
The list could go on and include users with or without dogs but we need
to identify first the major macro clusters.


Slide 29
A "Version" is not a requirement. Central step which leads from Group specificrequirement to a 
specific offer is missing. An example:
"Educational Orgs" are assigned to "Community Version" when they're first/second cycle, but 
universities are assigned to "Ecosystem Version". Why? Which requirements a differentiating them? 
Not-to-pay-for-Version only for first/second cycle, because Universities do have more money to 
spend and less buerocracy? 
It's just a basic attempt to identify who may need/should implement LTS,
Enterprise support and/or should be capable to contribute back to the
project through code, donation or by using the ecosystem that in turn
contributes back.


Slide 30
"Move from “TDF announces” to “the LibreOffice project announces”, with quotes from community 
members or ecosystem members, as appropriate"

This is overdue, indeed. And will strengthen the brand "LibreOffice" as well. But c.f. remark to 
Slide 13.
As you see we are getting there ;-)

Slide 32
"LibreOffice Personal..." - There have been expressed a lot of (imho) appropriate arguments 
against this kind of labeling. No need to repeat. We should not tell things to our customers 
which are not true (like "LibreOffice Enterprise:... suggested for production environments and 
strategic documents" which strongly implies there is a quality or even functionality gap between 
the two versions - if not even unfixed bugs in the community version).
I'm more for Community Edition than for "Personal" to make it clear for
all that this is a Community effort.
Many LibreOffice users in Government or companies don't even know how
LibreOffice ended up on their PCs and may think that we are coming out
of a rehab 'community'.
The point is to get the opportunity to tell the millions of users that
don't know anything about us and that they think LibreOffice is a
product from just another company that things are different from what
they think.

We know what we do and they should know it as well so hopefully if the
company/organisation is big enough and has developers can help with code
or if they have a donation budget they can support us but if they have a
"product" mentality then they can get proper support and integration
services by the ecosystem which in turn will help us as well.

I don't like putting a description that diminishes the qualities of
LibreOffice but I think we should say something that tells them that
software in a company should be professionally supported. Something like:

"You are using the Community version of LibreOffice, for supported
business use consider LibreOffice Enterprise products and services."

What do you think about it?

Slide 35 to 38
Good ideas - bot not TDFs business at all (cf. for the statutes: "promotion and development of 
office software available for use by anyone free of charge" is exactly /not/ what the ecosystem 
companies do, so TDF cannot support them to that effect)!
Acting accordingly to this concept by TDF undoubtly will lead it to be a part of the marketing 
branch of the ecosystem companies and violating it's statutes.
Maybe the ecosystem companies make up a joint agency for realizing these good ideas?
I read the statutes and talked a lot with those that wrote them to
understand correctly the spirit of what they wrote and not just the text.
I totally agree with you, TDF should not promote any commercial company
out there.

This is another point that we put out there to have your feedback.

From one side we have organisations that are contributing a lot to
LibreOffice which we should support and the other side we have our duty
to run TDF following its statutes and principles.

The other issue I see is that the other companies could setup an agency
to promote their good work but then we'll have to work out a TM
agreement if they want to mention LibreOffice and keep nagging them if
we think that a comma in an article that mention LibreOffice is not good
for us.

Let's not forget that we still have to work on an entity that will
manage the apps in the app stores.
I'm personally keen on setting up non-profit/commercial (TBD)
organisation fully owned by TDF which could also act as marketing tool
for both TDF and the ecosystem. Being fully owned by TDF and maybe also
financially supported by the ecosystem it may be able to be balanced
enough and the Board can always deliberate to steer it in the right
direction if/when necessary.

Any thoughts about it?
Stopped here by now, will be continued maybe later on the rest of the topics.

I guess it's a good start for a conversation.

Ciao

Paolo

-- 
Paolo Vecchi - Deputy Member of the Board of Directors
The Document Foundation, Kurfürstendamm 188, 10707 Berlin, DE
Gemeinnützige rechtsfähige Stiftung des bürgerlichen Rechts
Legal details: https://www.documentfoundation.org/imprint


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