Thursday, August 29, 2013

The LUG Conundrum


First up, to everyone, and I mean everyone who does anything for a LUG I thank you.

So much of what we do today would be dead in the water without your support for the past 5-10 years.

The Domino Ecosystem is very sick - we all know the reasons.

Probably the easiest way to raise cash would be to charge a minimal fee to attend - but that may not fly. 

Recently I put forward an idea to my local LUG offering to donate a % of product sales if they extended offers to their LUG members. I did it a couple of times and never got an answer. I don't know why.

LUGs need healthy Sponsors. Sponsors need healthy product sales. Users like free stuff. Users need to support Sponsors. It is a bit of a conundrum.

The Ecosystem needs to be strong and it starts with IBM supplying the sunlight.


4 comments:

Henning Heinz said...

If the Domino ecosystem is very sick WITH free sponsored LUG events then they don't seem to work !?

Giulio Campobassi said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Giulio Campobassi said...

I am assuming you're referring to Warren Elsmore's recent blog. The LUG/ICON formula is perhaps the most efficiently run and content rich small technical events out there simply because of the Darwinian selection process demonstrated by attendees. The whole event and its mix is finely tuned, you couldn't really expect more from an event of that size.

The community runs it fairly responsibly, and they do so with gusto. But this sort of undertaking should not be the sole financial responsibility of just one guy. Commendable by Warren, but he's not gonna get an award for it, (although i think he should).

So, as the collective stares turn towards IBM, if they do not participate that will send some bad signals to BP's and the market. However, IBM did participate but in a very cheap way, and still sent more guys to the event than what even their own sponsorship would cover, (apparently), and that looks *really* cheap.

So, I agree with you, IBM UK has to go in "balls first" on this if they are to appear strong and committed, or just wash their hands of it, send 20 guys, and eat all the free food this year and be done with it... because there won't be another.

Grant Osborne said...

Attendees should be realistic and reasonably expect to pay a fee to attend such events, the concept of "free" is a false one (the final fate of these LUG events will possibly testify to this), it may come as a rude shock to some individuals but someone always actually pays for everything.

To use Giulio's words these LUG events have been finely tuned, efficiently run, rich in technical content and often featuring international presenters. All that for free? Doesn't sound very balanced, sustainable or feasible does it?

A healthy, sustainable ecosystem requires a "give and take" balance to maintain it's very existence.

Put your Thinking Caps on people.

This illusion of a seriously well run "Free" event and even "Free" software, is it all really at no cost?