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Re: [tdf-discuss] Re: RfD: Non-corporate user representation?


Hello Nino,

On 5 décembre 2014 17:13:09 CET, Nino Novak <nn.libo@kflog.org> wrote:
>Hi Charles,
>
>thanks for your reply :)
>
>Am 05.12.2014 um 15:30 schrieb Charles-H. Schulz:
>> Le 05.12.2014 11:37, Nino Novak a écrit :
>>> Hi,
>>>
>>> AFAICS, TDF does not have any formal "Joe Average" user lobby.
>>>
>>> There are BoD, ESC, MC, AB - but the end user community only can
>send their
>>> opinions, needs and ideas to mailing lists or speak up informally in
>>> meetings.
>>
>> Yes... why is that a problem? :-) the bodies you mentioned are bodies
>that
>> are formed out of people or entities contributing something to the
>project.
>
>This is not per se a problem, but here, the problem starts.
>
>You really seem to believe that somebody just using LibreOffice does
>not
>contribute anything. In my eyes, everybody downloading the software and
>starting to use it, *does* contribute. At least their time :-)
>
>For me this is somehow obvious.

For me and others it is not. Contributors contributing time and users downloading the software are really different in their efforts. Making this distinction has allowed us to grow our community and our project in ways few people could think imaginable. The old OpenOffice.org project did not really make that distinction by the way and it was one of the factors that demotivated many actual and potential contributors.

>
>So my concern might come out of need of better appreciation of "the
>simple
>user". In my eyes, they are part of the community, too - but without a
>voice, without a saying. Is this, what TDF > stands for?

TDF stands for its constant effort in building a great community who produces great software. Somewhere along the line wwe are happy to have LibreOffice be used by dozens of millions. They can have a voice through feedback and support channels. Not as contributors.

>
>
>>> What about the idea of creating e.g. a "User Interest Commitee" (or
>board),
>>> which has an advisory role - similar to the AB? Could this help to
>better
>>> channelize / make visible the interests of "normal users"?
>>
>> This is a valid concern; so far we have options for feedback that are
>> summarized here: http://www.libreoffice.org/get-help/feedback/ but
>maybe we
>> could check if these carry out the right information in an acceptable
>time.
>
>What I'm giving here is also feedback ;-)
>
>
>>> There are highly
>>> competent people around in mailing lists and forums, who, at least
>to my
>>> believe, should be given a stronger voice than to just send a mail
>to a list.
>>
>> Sure, they can contribute anything from bug reports to marketing
>materials,
>> website bits, localizations, to code.
>
>See above - how much do you value contributing by just using the
>software?

At zero. Seriously.... very little value. And this is also why LibreOffice just like most other FOSS is available free of charge.

>
>
>>> (I know, the big hurdle is "to do it", but nevertheless wanted to
>express
>>> what I think/feel here as a starting point).*
>>
>> What TDF has refrained from doing is precisely let the impression
>that if
>> someone wants something, some developer will autmatically do it.
>
>Strange kind of thinking... I can't believe that TDF is gouverned by
>the
>fear of promising unrealistic dreams :-)

:-) it is not governed by that. But it has learned its lessons from the past.

>
>My concern in contrast is that the project thus neglects a whole bunch
>of
>good will, possibliy good ideas, and potentially clever opinions. And
>in
>addition, maybe, also fruitful dialogs.
>
>
> We believe
>> users can become contributors, and as such we try really hard to
>ensure
>> anyone can join the project and its activities (but of course this
>can be
>> improved!). However, "advices for free" is not something TDF and the
>project
>> in general is interested in. Did you have a different process in
>mind? What
>> would this user committee do specifically?
>
>Good question. A couple of answers...
>
>Appreciate the (needs of the) users...
>
>Listen to them...
>
>Give them a formal voice...
>
>Show officially that every single LibreOffice user is a valued
>contributor
>and per se member of the community (however not a "formal member",
>sure, as
>formal members have kind of an access threshold which I do not
>question).

Actually they don't. Members form the foundation but they do not have a priviledged access. Members decide on TDF and the way to become a member is by contributing.


>
>It's probably indeed a question of appreciation. And of valuing a large
>group of small contributors. Something like that.
>
>However, I still don't know if it's a good idea. That's the reason I
>put it
>here for discussion: from my gut feeling it would sound good to have
>one (or
>a few) User Interest Representatives in one of the
>commitees/boards/whatever. Their "duty" could be to give their opinion
>to
>questions from the UX or ESC or QA (like "should this button be renamed


So UX is really easy to join and so is QA. But aside polling people I think the real question would then be: how do we turn users into contributors?


>or
>not?" or "what default value should this option have?" or something
>like
>that) or even pass them to the public and to wisely value the responses
>they
>get. And people like e.g. Brian Barker from the users list seem to be
>extremely sensitive to real needs of simple users, so why not ask for
>their
>input? BTW, asking for an opinion in my eyes even reduces the
>impression of
>implementing something automatically just if somebody says something -
>au
>contraire. It rather signalizes high sensitivity and responsibility by
>the
>questioner :-)

I am interested in this kind of feedback, definitely but I would like to point out that users support is also a contribution. The question then is: why do most of the people who provide users support are not members yet?
>
>So that's my idea - but it's just an idea, please take it as it is.
>It's
>just the idea of lifting the quality of the project yet a bit if simple
>users are given a formal advocate. It might be worth an experiment.

Well we had that back at OpenOffice.org and it did not work. Most of these initiatives either end up in wasted energy or bitter fights.

I do however believe we should consult our users on more topics; for instance we have weekly polls on UX on Twitter and they help greatly. Perhaps we should broaden their scope?

Best,
Charles.
>
>Regards,
>Nino
>
>
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Follow-Ups:
[tdf-discuss] Re: RfD: Non-corporate user representation?Nino Novak <nn.libo@kflog.org>
References:
[tdf-discuss] RfD: Non-corporate user representation?Nino Novak <nn.libo@kflog.org>
Re: [tdf-discuss] RfD: Non-corporate user representation?"Charles-H. Schulz" <charles.schulz@documentfoundation.org>
[tdf-discuss] Re: RfD: Non-corporate user representation?Nino Novak <nn.libo@kflog.org>
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