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"LSB 1.0"

I have some marketing related comments about LSB.

Imo, the LSB:
1. Can only succeed on merit. More importantly, can easily fail despite
having adequate merit.
2. May cause many of those using version 1.0 to pull their hair out and
proclaim the LSB to be a bad thing.
3. Has a name ("Linux Standards Base") that invites wild speculation by
the ignorant and inevitable subsequent disappointment.
4. Is perceived as a project that is almost too late.

Given any _one_ of the foregoing, not to mention all 4, I think it is
important to:

1. Severely downplay the LSB. Absolutely no hint of hype. (Until world
domination is clearly in ones sights. Then all is fair of course. ;>)
The only LSB related releases I've ever read do the reverse of this.
This is a very dangerous move in terms of long term marketing impact due
to the short term effect of disappointment.

2. Work hard in marketing materials to clarify what problem the LSB is
tackling, and especially what problems it is not. Have your points honed
for the linux press and linux public before you write the press release
for the first release of LSB. (Don't worry about the non-linux savvy
press and public, because they will misinterpret anything you say
anyway.) The key objective is to do your best to preempt or at least
dampen speculation and misunderstanding and spurious but load complaints
in the first weeks of release.

3. Leave the beta tag on as long as possible at least as far as public
consumption goes, and in particular, as far as claims of compliance by
distros and ISVs. If you must remove the beta tag to send the right
message to distros and ISVs, don't call it LSB 1.0, but instead call it
something like LSBA1.0 and let them all know that while the LSB is
deemed ready for them, the term "LSB 1.0 compliant" must be held back
for a few months to make sure that any early minor issues don't fatally
torpedo LSB's reputation among the user public. At some date, the LSB
will declare LSBA1.x equal to LSB1.0. (Incidentally, this will cause the
distro's and ISV's marketing floodgates to simultaneously open, creating
the oft sought after marketing big bang.)

Perhaps I'm being too paranoid. Success for the LSB looks all but
inevitable because it was the right thing to do, and it is clearly being
done right by talented people up to the task. But it's better to be safe
than sorry...

Ralph Mellor: http://www.dimp.com/ralphmellor.html   615.292.2917 x2
If I had my life over, I'd study reincarnation.        icq# 108597127
Digital Impact: http://www.dimp.com/    615.292.2917 or 877.DIMP.COM
2510 Essex Place, Nashville TN 37212               Fax: 615.269.9520

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