[libreoffice-marketing] Re: [libreoffice-design] Moving to LibreOffice 8?

Italo Vignoli italo at vignoli.org
Thu Apr 6 10:06:54 UTC 2023

On 06/04/23 10:08, Eyal Rozenberg wrote:

> That is exactly what I'm opposing. Let's assume that the real situation 
> is "boring" (I'm not sure that's the case, but still) and that, indeed, 
> the changes since 7 are not fundamental enough to merit a version bump 
> on their own (and I realize this is not in consensus either). In this 
> state of affairs, evoking artificial interest in a new major version 
> without substance behind it is a _marketing trick_, a psychological 
> manipulation. One could even say it's mis-informing our users. It hurts 
> user trust. Sure, it's not terrible to play with version numbers, but - 
> I don't think that's something our users, current and potential, would 
> like us to do.

All major releases of Microsoft Office are managed by marketing, as all 
major releases of proprietary software and hardware companies, and not 
by developers, and are based on what you call "marketing tricks".

By the way, marketing is a profession - as development - which is based 
on a specific professional background, and on a mindset which is 100% 
different from the mindset of a developer.

This is probably the reason why developers, and in general people with a 
strong technical background, do not understand marketing and consider it 
useless. Marketing is the opposite of science, and is based on behaviour 
analisys (which is the "least scientific" science, although some people 
are trying to "smuggle" it as science).

I have been a marketing executive for the last 42 years (since 1981), 
and the best marketing strategies I have managed during that time have 
been based on gut feelings (including the launch of Photoshop and PDF, 
when I was a marketing consultant for Adobe, and they both were huge 

Given that Microsoft Office's market share is well over 50%, it looks 
like users of office suites do like marketing tricks. Please remember 
that around 98% of users are not able to judge features.

I am not contributing to QA for a very simple reason: I am not able to 
understand if the software behaviour is right or wrong (unless is clear 
as in the case of font embedding in macOS), and this is because I am not 
interested in technical details but I look at the wider picture.

Even if I am technically illiterate, outside the open source environment 
I am considered a geek because I usually am more competent than 98% of 
"normal" software users.

It should be clear that 80% (and probably more) of what we communicate 
is targeted to "normal" software users, and not to community members or 
to people with a technical background, who are already using LibreOffice 
(or refuse to use it for technical reasons). They are not our target, 
given that office suites are commodities.

Our target is mis-informed and mis-educated by Microsoft, but doesn't 
realize it. On the contrary, they trust Microsoft more than they trust 
open source software.
Italo Vignoli - italo at vignoli.org
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