[OSGeo-Discuss] Costly FOSS4Gs

MarĂ­a Arias de Reyna delawen+osgeo at gmail.com
Tue Oct 17 03:29:54 PDT 2017

On Tue, Oct 17, 2017 at 12:15 PM, Tom Chadwin <tom.chadwin at nnpa.org.uk> wrote:
> Hello all
> A significant group who have possibly not yet chimed in on this issue are the commercial organizations who sell GFOSS support and development. I presume that FOSS4G is one of their best opportunities to get new business.

One of my targets when trying to make FOSS4G more affordable is
companies who may not be the big companies, but still can offer good
GFOSS services and contribute to it. In fact, I see much more benefit
in having a lot of small companies contributing than just one single
large company. I would be happier with a lot of small sponsors, each
of them contributing and believing on freedom.

I see FOSS4G as a place where everyone meet: developers, users,
companies. And each one can interact with the ones they are most
interested in. Should we focus only on having a shiny-suit conference
to attract investors? I doubt it, part of the strength of FLOSS is
precisely not being so "shiny-suited" but being a big community where
everyone can contribute and receive more than what they contributed.
We should never lose track of that, the community and the freedom to
reuse is our best attribute. Should we make sure we look serious and
trustables? Yes, definitely. But that's not incompatible.

Should we improve the B2B? Also yes. Making sure money flows is what
will make FOSS4G and OSGeo survive. Without money, many of the things
we do would be impossible. So, we have to balance the "attract
investors" with the "don't lose our identity", which is not simple and
believe me, not cheap :)

Anyway, ideas are always welcome. Even if you are not involved in
FOSS4G organization directly, I'm sure helping hands making everything
better are always welcome.

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