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From Graham Lauder <>
Subject Re: (was Re: Ooo blog)
Date Mon, 11 Jul 2011 11:36:18 GMT
On Sat, 2011-07-09 at 08:34 -0400, Rob Weir wrote:

> But seriously, the ".org" was added to make the name unique.  It also
> occurred during the .com bubble when making your product sound
> internetty would make your stock price quadruple over night.  So we
> ended up with a lot of silly names back then.

The oft referred to TLAs, (one of which I worked for: NCR.) are now
regarded as a bit of a joke so perhaps IBM should be changed to Inbusmac
because it reflects more of it's roots and sounds cooler and less like
I-Pod. ;)

 A brand should rarely be changed on a whim and certainly not as a part
of other wholesale changes that are likely make the customer feel
uncomfortable.  New "ownership", new license.  We change the brand, we
make the project even less relevant and we lose ground to the

> Today, however, the original reason for adding the ".org" no longer
> exists.  And instead of sounding cool, it sounds very retro, so very
> 2001. 

>  On the other hand, we have a generation of pedants who enjoy
> correcting users who almost always just call the product "OpenOffice",
> oblivious any attempts to enlighten them about how some Dutch company
> they never heard of was also called OpenOffice.  So regardless of what
> we do, users will continue calling the product "OpenOffice".

And that is their right as much as it is the right for most of the
online community to refer to it as OOo.  The pedants, at  least those in
the marketing project, only correct journos who should know better.  and
we do it because every mention of the name in text in the standard 14
character layout strengthens the brand.

Get the brand out there.  Get people to recognise the brand, I don't
give rats arse how they they use it amongst themselves, so long as when
they talk about open office, the brand they associate with that is    

> You can reading the Apache requirements for product branding and
> naming here:
> Quoting from there:  "The primary branding for any project or product
> name must be in the form of 'Apache Foo'.  This ensures that the
> project or product is associated with the ASF and the project in the
> minds of our users. The first and most prominent reference to a
> project or product on each page must use the 'Apache Foo' form of its
> name. Other references may use either 'Apache Foo' or 'Foo' as
> appropriate for the subject matter."

Rules can be changed when circumstances demand it, this is one of those
circumstances.  If the brand was going to be strengthened by the
addition, like for instance calling it IBM OpenOffice, then I'd be all
for it, it strengthens the brand by adding the global strength of the
IBM brand.  Unfortunately Apache is not a consumer brand and adds
nothing and in fact lessens the brand by confusing the consumer

> Personally, I think the first name is ponderous and ugly.
> -Rob

But you are not our target market and that is the point, if you could
make good argument that retaining the name would scare off new
developers (who are a target market, though not a consumer market) then
I might be willing to change my position, but I'd have to say that it
would have to be a very good argument.   


Graham Lauder, MarCon (Marketing Contact) NZ Migration and training Consultant.

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