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Re: [board-discuss] Re: Some problems.

Hi there,

        I thought I'd pull together a thread that runs through a
subset of the comments here:

Here is Mark S writing in bugzilla:
Let LibreOffice stay LibreOffice, and let any commercial derivatives
deal with naming issues of their products on their own time.

        Several other comments are more of the form:

                "your problem, not mine", or
                "TDF doesn't need to nurture an ecosystem -
                 why complain to TDF" ?

        So - of course, that is on one hand fine. Hypothetically TDF
could sit at the center of a pure volunteer project, perhaps with
enough mentors and enough donations that might work out (though on
current trends this might also result in a project a tenth of the
size). On the other hand getting there from here, while not loosing all
momentum would be wrenchingly problematic.

        I guess there are some elaboraions of this:

On 15/07/2020 14:11, Telesto wrote:
The 'free beer' argument starting to become annoying;-). I'm hearing
lots of self-pitty.
Nobody asks a company to contribute to the LibreOffice code (for free).
Yes, it belongs to a model where you believe in.
If you believe code be open source, while making profit, it's also your
task to come up with a business model generating revenue.

        Sure, so - it's a harsh market. TDF can choose to make it
harsher by competing with the ecosystem that creates much of the
LibreOffice code, and mentors much of the developer community. Or it
can be passive and do nothing to nurture investment. Or it can create
space for those that contribute to its mission and help out. Having a
clear approach is helpful though. One of the problems is ambiguity:
bait & switch: encourage the investment, but squash the returns by
changing the rules =) That is why having a long-term settled consensus
is really helpful.

The world is hard and pretty unfair.

        Indeed, on the other hand - my hope is that we shouldn't use
that as an argument to structure things to be deliberately unfair. To
a large degree TDF helps to seed the environment for the ecosystem to
flourish around the codebase and fulfill its mission with it. Arguably
(and I would say this) TDF cannot fill every niche, and serve every
market itself - for a host of reasons.

On 14/07/2020 16:07, toki wrote:
On 2020/07/14 10:41, Michael Meeks wrote:
On 12/07/2020 20:32, toki wrote:
I'd blame the lack of sales on Collabora having a really bad website

     So, if getting sales is only a function of a really good website

I think it was Brian Tracy who wrote if your website can't sell the
qualified prospect, it needs to be redesigned.

         I think we're all hopeful that we can create an advert or
webpage that makes it impossible not to buy your product ;-) Brian's
quote mentions qualified prospects - that's much easier with a
sensible lead flow of people who are aware that you exist.

Beyond that - creating, maintaining and translating a website into
a handful of languages is an expensive hobby.

Budget US$100,000 per language per year, for a multilingual website.
This is addition to the cost of designing and maintaining the website.
Before adding languages, look at both the financial ROI, and PR value.
Will the language generate at least US$1,000,000 in additional business
each year ?

        Well, for our existing ~five languages - if we did that we'd
have to transition half of our development staff to marketing at some
significant loss to Free software; I assume you'll want a big budget
for paid multi-language advertising to bring people to that website,
and for sales people too to qualify the leads ? That would consume our
entire budget without any contribution back.

        Either way - given that the same website sells Online but not
Desktop, despite advertising both, my suggestion would be that making
people aware that they shouldn't be running large un-supported
deployments - is a leading factor here.

The last thing any business owner wants to hear from a current
customer is "I went with company x, because I didn't know you
provided that service."

        I think that's the fundamental problem here; getting the word
out effectively that the services around LibreOffice exist, and that
buying them is good for the customer, good for the codebase, so good
for all our users, and good for the community.



-- <><, GM Collabora Productivity
Hangout:, Skype: mmeeks
(M) +44 7795 666 147 - timezone usually UK / Europe

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