LinuxPlanet: .comment: Savor the Unmarketed Moment

“Marketers are drawn to money as surely as maggots were drawn to
aforementioned raccoon. And right now and for the foreseeable
future Linux is dripping with money. Linux companies have gone
public, already public companies are investing hundreds of millions
(not a typo) of dollars in Linux, and there are a lot of other
nonpublic companies that have Linux at their core.”

“Expect to hear phrases like ‘brand recognition.’ Expect to see
press releases with phrases like ‘Red Hat brand Linux.’ (I’m not
picking on Red Hat here; any of the distributions could do it, and
many probably will.) There is a lot of playing for position going
on here, and the marketer’s job is to make it all look good — even
the bad stuff. In some cases, “brand visibility’ will be important
because stockholders (‘partners’ in both the old and new senses, so
far) will need something to hang onto in lieu of dividends.”

“While the hostilities among the two leading Linux desktops have
subsided, there remains, as there should, some competition. But
this competition has taken on its marketing aspects, too: Why else
would there be some quiet discussion in both camps as to the timing
of the next release (both are due for new versions next month) to
gain maximum ‘mindshare’ over the other?”

“Don’t get me wrong: I’m highly in favor of making money. I do
it for a living, as I suspect you do, did, or shall. The heartbreak
is in anticipation of the lavender fog of nonsense and
pseudo-technobabble that has permeated almost every aspect of life
now coming to envelop Linux. The Bazaar is about to be blanketed
with smog emitted by the Cathedral’s smokestacks. Nobody will be
prevented from doing whatever he or she was doing before, but the
oxygen level will be dropping and visibility will be impaired.”


Get the Free Newsletter!

Subscribe to Developer Insider for top news, trends, & analysis