On 2006-02-02, at 10:14 , Ian Lynch wrote:

On Fri, 2006-02-03 at 02:04 +0000, Graham Lauder wrote:

In conclusion many positives in terms of the greater conference. Many more educators are aware of OOo. We have a positive high profile as a project, especially in terms of the NLC. However we did ourselves no favours with the MiniConf organisation. We need to substantially lift
our game in that area.

The question is how to do it? If its entirely relying on volunteer
goodwill the quality will be entirely dependent on individuals. That is
a known recipe for uneven standards in whatever field we care to
mention. Its why we need some form of income stream. Without it I can't see how this situation will get much better. We had similar problems at DLS last year and look at the acrymony generated. The difference between
Mozilla and OOo there was because Mozilla sells merchandise they have
money to fund the things that make their presence at a conference work.
Decent presentation materials and the money to ship them places,
professionally printed leaflets and handouts and the merchandise itself. Its really not fair on the volunteers to make the effort to get to these places often at their own expense and then to be made to feel that their
work is counterproductive. The marketing project needs a budget - if
necessary set up its own foundation and put some energy into fund
raising. Yes I know about all the problems with an OOo foundation but
until all that is sorted out there is nothing to stop the MP setting up
a not for profit bank account and doing some fund raising. We should
have done it 3 years ago and then we would have been 3 years further
down the road but if we wait another 3 years..well its a no brainer as
to the outcome.

You may want to look at the Community Council archives. Last year we discussed creating a nonprofit for marketing and other activities (the actual purpose would be to manage money) but little came of it, though not because of a real lack of interest. I'm reanimating the issue and we are beginning to discuss it in the CC. I'm sending a new draft of the proposal to the CC later on today. Some points: this nonprofit would be located in North America, probably the US. It would manage money for OOo activities, including marketing.



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