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Hi Paolo,

I think as stated earlier, as part of the consultation regarding the marketing plan there should be 
a discussion around tag names. Collectively calling the ecosystem "Enterprise" has connotations of 
different editions, even if it's stated that there will be no difference in versions.

Community could be the result but it seems based on comments here Italo disagrees with using that 
term and both Michael and Italo have commented here that Personal is still on the table. I 
apologize for my abrasiveness (I wish no ill-will against Michael or Italo and I apologize if they 
feel that way), I'm just responding based on the comments on this mailing list as to what I see. If 
there are in-person discussions that allow for more nuanced understanding because of how we humans 
communicate, that's great.

Regarding software solutions; I don't want to prescribe anything. It should be up to the staff at 
TDF to determine what they're comfortable working with. I think the democraciaos suggested by 
Daniel, or Loomio might be solutions worth investigating though to facilitate more stakeholder 

I would suggest that multiple FOSS projects are using open source forum software to engage their 
communities. Discourse and NodeBB are two popular, modern looking ones with many community 
enhancing features (upvoting, badges, signatures, polling, easy screenshot attachment, gifs, 
stickied posts, etc.) that could increase engagement and accessibility in the project. These 
software have been production ready for 4+ years. I would think, if I were maintaining a community 
such as this, doing a review of community engagement software every 4 or 5 years would be 
appropriate to stay up to date with the times while not being too intrusive to established 
workflows. Maybe that's too rapid for some.

Consider that the Apache OnlyOffice forum is being used today by people looking for LibreOffice 
support. ie. rather than getting community support from the askbot, people are going to a different 
organization's dated phpbb forums to ask for support, because of the familiarity and comfort with 
using forum software. There are also limitations with askbot that have been identified multiple 
times over the past 6 years on the LO askbot site, and these were ignored by TDF. I hear now 
there's a plan to transition to a forum, that's great!

These software being able to be self-hosted I am sure TDF could find a hosting provider that is 
GDPR-compliant that would be willing to provide hosting and maintenance for those software without 
a significant cost.

Personally, I think a dedicated modern open-source forum will go a long way to providing support 
and building a community engagement with the project, if moderated correctly and with the usage of 
polls, etc. I even think it's worth paying a small annual fee to be able to post (but not view), or 
to receive a badge. I also don't see forum software disappearing in a few months/years as they've 
been established for a long time.

I would suggest these could be used to replace the mailing list as well as they do offer threaded 
functionality and can be archived for accountability. At least some mailing list discussions should 
move to a forum, notably the marketing and discussion forums. We now have conversations occurring 
on Telegram, LO blog posts, mailing lists, and external sites outside of TDF moderation. Further 
with the mailing list I can't edit or be moderated for the insensitive statements I made earlier 
which doesn't bug me as much but I do feel bad if others are continuously offended.

I would try to provide more thoughts but I've reached what I have time available for to contribute 
to the "Community Edition" of LibreOffice and I have to get back to work.


    On 09/07/2020 14:48 Paolo Vecchi <> wrote:

    Hi Kev,

    thanks for your feedback and see inline my comments.

    On 09/07/2020 19:41, Kev M wrote:

        > >         It would be better to call it "LibreOffice Unsupported" and "LibreOffice Paid 
Support" instead of using the terms "LibreOffice Enterprise" and "LibreOffice Personal".

    > Note that we are talking about adding a tag line, if the Community agrees, and that you 
are very welcome to propose the tag line you would like to LibreOffice which, apart from the 
tag line, won't change in anything else.

    As described in the proposed marketing plan, in the communication we sent out Monday and on 
various channels there won't be any product called "LibreOffice Enterprise" coming out of TDF, 
that's only a collective name we are proposing for the members of the ecosystem.

        > > 

        You're arguing that using the term "community" creates confusion because of other open 
source projects providing the same tagging. But some of those projects also use "Enterprise" to 
describe their paid versions, and those versions have different features than their community 
editions. So I don't get the argument that allowing for the "Enterprise" tag is OK, but a 
"Community" tag is not.

    > Once again there won't be any "Enterprise" tag in any version of LibreOffice.

    Community makes sense to us as we are the LibreOffice Community and I also like it as 
potential additional tag for LibreOffice but...
    out there, for people that don't know anything about Open Source communities, the term 
community means something else like a help group that helps you kicking the habit.

    It's like FLOSS, we know what it means but my kids find it annoying. It seems like they 
prefer to go to the dentist than flossing their teeth ;-)

        > > 
        I've read and understand the context of the marketing plan, as well as Michael's 
article on business models. I understand the intent; but there is uncertainty about LibreOffice 
as a sustainable project as is being alluded to by Michael and other ecosystem partners and 
this is being used as a veiled threat to introduce changes that haven't received proper 
community consultation. A statement by TDF saying there is no plan to do these things, while 
continuing to discuss moving to an edition system, is the left hand washing the car while the 
right hand throws dirt --- or some better idiom than this.

    > We are tasked to propose and promote changes that help sustaining/growing the Community 
which develops LibreOffice.
    You, being part of the Community, have the right and the duty to do the same and to stand for 
election next time so that you can propose your ideas to the Board, you can do it also now 
without being in the Board BTW, discuss them, see if they make sense, and then propose them to 
the Community. This is what we are doing now.

    AFAIK Michael complains and says that we are all doomed every so often but when he doesn't do 
that he's a nice chap and a very valuable member of the Community. At least we have a wide range 
of views ;-)

        > > 

        To point to links and mailing lists that anyone under the age of 40 probably does not 
use regularly is not a good way to engage with your community. Several suggestions have been 
made and it seems like certain people are resistant to them without giving legitimate reasons 
beyond "this is always how we've done it, you should have checked instead. It's your fault for 
not flooding your email inbox with chatter."

    > One of the things I most hate is hearing/reading people saying "this is always how we've 
done it", those are the people that keep doing the same stuff because are scared of change or 
can't be arsed to change.

    I'm over 40 and I've used/I'm using quite a number of communication channels, mailing lists 
are not sexy but are still a decent tool for asynchronous communication that can be threaded.

    Could you recommend other tools that could be even more efficient which would not make us 
dependent on a third party and that really care about everyone's Privacy?

    It's easy to use new toys that pop in and disappear after a few months or years but we think 
that we should host as much as possible ourselves to satisfy even the most paranoid Privacy 
activist (here I am) and archive our mailing list to be accountable.

    Please do offer us your advice.

        > >         (There are 40 upvotes and 0 downvotes on this comment:
 ) Obviously how it's been done before is not working because people are upset and concerned 
about the project. So I'd encourage some self-reflection in resisting calls to use modern 
software infrastructure for the project to communicate better with stakeholders/donors beyond 
those who have the privilege to be paid to work on the project.

    > I read The Register (hi guys!) practically every day and I like the fact that there are a 
lot of interesting and useful comments to articles.
    Some comments with knowledge of what they are talking about some others may not have yet a 
clear view of the issue.

    The point is that I'm pleased that many came out to complain, got clarifications and now they 
are contributing to improving the project.

        > > 


    > Ciao


    Paolo Vecchi - Deputy Member of the Board of Directors
    The Document Foundation, Kurfürstendamm 188, 10707 Berlin, DE
    Gemeinnützige rechtsfähige Stiftung des bürgerlichen Rechts
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