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On 10/11/2020 12.35, Italo Vignoli wrote:
On 11/10/20 9:59 AM, Michael Weghorn wrote:

after thinking about the whole topic once again, I have to say that I
wouldn't personally consider the approach to "exert some moral suasion"
by putting a label that is more or less supposed to say "Either buy a
LibreOffice Enterprise edition from an ecosystem company or don't use
LibreOffice at all in your organization" an approach that I'd be happy with.

The label is just the starting point for a communication strategy. Of
course, there are other elements which have to be included, in term of
messages and in term of commercial offerings.

That sounds reasonable and (positively) encouraging the use of
commercial support is something I am fine with in general, just not
"trying to force it" (which IMHO at least some of the suggested labels
would more or less do).

I think that a more wide-spread use of LibreOffice (in whatever edition)
will in the end also result in more companies looking for (and being
willing to pay for) professional support of some kind. And IMHO, many
companies have needs for professional support besides the fact that
there is no "annoying label".

If we were referring to a competitive market (a market where there is an
even competition between players), I would agree, but we are in a market
where there are two players - Microsoft and Google - with advantages on
other players which are based on other factors:

1. The near monopoly situation - in the year 2000 Microsoft Office
reached a 96% market share in the office suite market, which is still
leveraging after 20 years - reached by a single player thanks to the
"silent approval" of worldwide governments

2. The uneven situation, in term of available money and reach (Microsoft
and Google are two of the GAFAMs), in a market where money and reach are
key factors (Microsoft is still investing billion of dollars in the
office suite market)

3. The incredible amount of user data owned by Microsoft and Google
(thanks to the "vocal encouragement" of the US government), which offers
insights on marketing and sales activities which are not available to
other players

The list could be longer - as there are certification programs, channel
support programs, economic incentives or discounts, and other commercial
strategies and tools, which are expensive to set and manage - and other
form of pressure based on the enforcement of the license, plus heavy
investments in lobby activities (billions of dollars).

So, increasing LibreOffice market share is a difficult exercise, also
because we are talking about a commodity, where the power of advertising
and communications is higher than in value added markets.

I agree that increasing LibreOffice market share is difficult given
those circumstances. I still have the impression that there is a
positive trend towards FLOSS, e.g. also in German public administrations
(like [1], but that is using OnlyOffice as of now), also due to GDPR and
a desire to become more independent from said GAFAMs (whose strategy
rather seems to be to force their users/customers to give them more and
more data and less and less control).

Anyway, labels
will not impact on generic marketing activities targeted at increasing
LibreOffice market share.

Sounds reasonable. My concern was (and is) just that "a scary label"
might have a negative impact on LibreOffice's market share since it
could make organizations decide not to use LibreOffice.

2) In my opinion, it has the potential to discourage several kinds of
contributions to LibreOffice by more or less advertising buying a
licensed enterprise version as the "only valid way" to use LibreOffice
inside an organization. While I believe that this may be the right
approach for many organizations, it excludes other kinds of
contributions that we should IMHO encourage, like e.g.:

On the contrary, the objective is to increase the different support
options by enterprises, the largest one being the purchase of a desktop
license providing added value vs the "free" version (Microsoft and
Google are selling subscriptions to services, where support is not even
mentioned as the "product is perfect as it is", which is what users do
believe, because this is what they are told).

I currently still don't see how the kind of contributions I explicitly
mentioned would be encouraged, but rather think an "intrusive" label on
the TDF version (if chosen) would in the end discourage those.

I see the point, though, and it's certainly possible to make a strategic
decision which kind of contributions organizations should be encouraged
to make in the first place. As such, it is probably valid to decide to
focus on encouraging organizations to buy licenses and accept that the
way chosen to do so may have a negative impact on other kind of
contributions; it's just not what I'd personally prefer.

Given that, and that "No label is not an option" (which would have been
the preferred option otherwise), I'd still be for something rather
neutral like "TDF Edition" (which still gives a hint that there are
other editions available as well, in particular when mentioned
explicitly at an appropriate place), but could live with "Standard
Edition", too (or another similar label, but "Basic" doesn't sound good
to me).

No label is not an option, because if we do not have a label for the
version provided by TDF we will never have a label for the enterprise
version, and it will be impossible to have a coordinated communication
strategy (and is not difficult to foresee which will be the long term
result of this situation).

I'm OK with a "neutral" label. From how I understand it, that would
however somewhat defeat the original purpose of why the label is
supposed to be introduced ("exert some moral suasion").

This is also why I currently don't have the impression of being able to
contribute more to the discussion in a constructive way (seeing myself
rather looking for an option that is the least intrusive, which doesn't
seem to be in line with the intended outcome...).

(German only)

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