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Hi all,My name is Riemer Thalen and I am not a programmer. I'm a
      marketing guy. For the last couple of years I have been wondering:
      how come so many people pay hundreds of dollars for MS Office when
      they can have OOo/LibO for free?Apparently, many people feel LibO does not match MS Office. 
      they are missing functions MS Office has, maybe they think LibO
      behaves oddly, or maybe... we don't know.And that's a real problem. Because if we really want 
LibO to
      become the number one office suite in the world, we need to find
      out what keeps people form switching to OOo/LibO permanently.I am not an old hand in the OOo 
community. Maybe some market
      reseach into former users has been done in the past. I searched
      the Internet and I could not find any reports.At present, the LibO developers are guided by 
community feedback.
      But for our purpose, that will not do. It is like asking iPhone
      users if they need a keyboard. No, of course they don't. If they
      thought a keyboard was neccessary they would not have bought an
      iPhone in the first place.The same applies to the OOo / LibO community. The members are
      dedicated LibO users and by definition they are not representative
      for former users.As it happens, my daughter who is business student needs to do a
      marketing survey. That's no big deal nowadays. All you have to do
      is open an account at a survey site. Then you compose a three
      question questionnaire.The questionnaire is posted and tagged on Facebook and LinkedIn.
      "Did you use OpenOffice in the past? Please, help us improve it.
      Answer just three questions." If only half of the subscribers to
      this mailing list would post the link, we probably will have more
      than enough respondents.The questionnaire could read like this:Yes, I used or
        tried in the past and I do not use it anymore.1) The main reason I dropped 
OOo concerned (tick as many boxes
        as are applicable): O Writer,O Calc,O Impress
        (presentation)O the whole suite2) What made me drop OOo was the following. (Just the one big
        problem. What was the show stopper for you?)3) What else needs to be fixed in OOo in your 
opinion? (Name as
        many issues as you like.)Thank you for your feedback!Indeed, this is a qualitative survey. 
We need to know how former
      users feel about OOo/LibO. In what terms do they describe their
      problem? How strongly do they feel about it? That is more
      important than the exact percentage thatencountered the issue.
      (Of course, the responses will later be categorized and counted,
      but this will result in quantative indications only.)Once the results are in and processed, 
two importants things can
      be done:1. the developers can prioritize issues, fixes, modifications and
      new functions2. the marketing group can create a "switchers guide" based on
      real-life feedback. Not all functions in LibO will be and can be
      the same as in MS Office. Knowing the differences and how to deal
      with them will greatly improve user satisfaction.OK, this is as far as my proposal goes. I 
would like to hear from
      you guys what you think of it. Personally, I feel it is very
      important to get feedback from outside the community. Moreover,
      IMHO it is crucial not only for the success of LibO, but also for
      the Linux desktop. Without an office suite that is considered
      state-of-the-art, Ubuntu, LinuxMint, Fedora and the likes are
      fighting an uphill battle...Hope to hear from you soon.Riemer Thalen

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