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LinuxPlanet: .comment: Savor the Unmarketed Moment

Sep 20, 2000, 16:16 (13 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Dennis E. Powell)

"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."

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