[GRASS-user] Re: [Qgis-user] Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] augmenting donations

Paolo Cavallini cavallini at faunalia.it
Mon Jul 6 05:16:49 EDT 2009

Thank you Andreas.

Andreas Neumann ha scritto:

> I am just trying to help you guys to understand how government agencies
> or companies often work (exceptions are always possible). It is
> important to educate managers regarding the open-source development
> model. They are just not used to it and at the first glimpse they can
> find it strange - even if it is to their advantage.

Yes, we are fully aware of this. That's why we start raising awareness
on these themes - a (modest) cultural change will do much to the future
of QGIS.

> One may discuss if QGIS/GRASS (or other projects) could offer yearly
> support contracts. It may help to raise additional money in some cases.
> It is important to distinguish such contracts from their fully
> commercial counterparts. Customers shouldn't be forced into paying those
> fees/contracts - but they may fell better with paying them. Probably,
> such contracts, would have to be done by individual companies - or could
> the steering board coordinate such activities?

IMHO mixing core development with paid support is not very good. Several
companies offer commercial, professional support on QGIS development,
and they invest in core QGIS development, see
http://qgis.org/en/commercial-support.html so if someone wants to play
safe, they have an easy and efficient way.

> Many managers in government agencies don't want to be held responsible
> in case things go wrong - and in case of using open-source software they
> are fully responsible about their decisions, whereas with commercial
> software they can always blame their commercial vendor (even if the
> contracts are always in favor of the software vendor and includes very
> limited liability of the vendor). At least in Switzerland I know that
> many GIS managers are thinking this way. They often want to at least
> share their responsibility with an external company.

So what I would tell them is: go ahead and contract one of the core
developers, or one of the companies listed in
http://qgis.org/en/commercial-support.html and
Several companies and agencies already do it.
All the best.
Paolo Cavallini: http://www.faunalia.it/pc

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