[OSGeo-Discuss] ESRI Spain conference incident

Lester Caine lester at lsces.co.uk
Fri Oct 17 03:35:24 EDT 2008

Jorge Gaspar Sanz Salinas wrote:
> Hi All, I resend this mail to OSGeo discuss because I think is a
> serious incident that cannot be obviated and shows how things are
> getting at least in Spanish market.
> I write this mail on behalf of Álvaro Anguix one of the leaders of
> gvSIG Project (it seems he is more confident with my English than me
> :P). I've posted his letter in Spanish on my personal weblog[1], and I
> write down here more or less his thoughts.
> As you may know, he works for IVER, the most prominent company that
> supports gvSIG (aside note, I work for Prodevelop, another gvSIG
> supporting company). Ok, some coworkers of him went to Madrid few days
> ago to attend the Annual ESRI Users Conference. Because IVER has
> customers that use ESRI technology they, as every year, wanted to know
> the latest "arc-news". Obviously they registered previously and they
> were confirmed by the organization.
> Well, when they tried to register at the beginning of the conference,
> the Marketing Director invited them to abandon the conference. Even
> more, the Managing Director of ESRI Spain insisted one of the IVER
> people that "to talk with customers, better she should go to a café or
> on the street". Quite annoying and bizarre!
> As Alvaro says, why they have this behavior with his colleagues? Maybe
> they fear FOSS companies?

Does sound rather annoying, and I assume that in addition to the time taken to 
get to the conference, money was also involved? I've had similar treatment in 
anther software area, but at least they had the courtesy to send an email 
after accepting the booking. Had I taken the time and expense to travel into 
London I think I would have been requesting that they gave me a refund of 
expenses at least!

In many areas where open source cooperation is now better established 
everybody has learnt what it is all about - COOPERATION - and we all help one 
another! I think that the likes of OSM and other open source developments in 
mapping are scaring a lot of companies that have been on a 'nice little 
earner' and they are going to have to adapt!

The open source data sets are by no means complete, but in some areas - such 
as China - they may be the only available source so companies trying to sell 
data certainly need to adapt fast to make their money in the overlaps :)

Lester Caine - G8HFL
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