Patrick Ohnewein of the Free Software Centre in South Tyrol on Open Source and Government

I’ve just uploaded my video interview with Patrick Ohnewein, Head of the Free Software Center in South Tyrol.

I met Patrick at the South Tyrol Free Software Conference (SFScon) and had the chance to ask him a number of questions, including:

  • What is the role of the Free Software Center?
  • Is there greater awareness of Open Source in government?
  • Is there a pattern in Open Source adoption?

Patrick also explains the motivation of the local government in sponsoring the development of the TIS Innovation Park and highlights how local companies in the region are using free software to distribute knowledge and foster innovation.

Stéfane Fermigier About Nuxeo's Marketing and the French Open Source Community

Last week, I published a video interview with Ross Turk that I recorded at Open World Forum in Paris. Here’s another interview that I recorded at the event, this time with Stéfane Fermigier, Founder and Chairman at Nuxeo. In this interview he discusses how Nuxeo markets its open source product and he also provides insight into the French open source community. Merci for a great interview, Stéfane!

Ingridient Branding in Open Source Communities – Interview with Eclipse's Ian Skerrett

Back at Eclipse Summit 2010, I had the chance to interview Ian Skerrett, Director, Marketing at Eclipse Foundation on all things marketing Eclipse.

He very nicely describes how he utilizes ingridient branding to leverage the marketing resources of Eclipse members to not only push their own solutions, but to also raise the visibility of the Eclipse brand:

I keep on coming back to ingredient branding. The most famous would be the “Intel Inside”, and Intel certainly paid a lot of money to create that, but they also used their partners to take Intel out to the end-users. [At Eclipse] it is really about working with the projects to make sure that they are good communicators, and they’re communicating a solution. To me the interesting thing is how do you get the wider community to understand that Eclipse is a place for doing collaboration.

Watch the video or read the transcript of the Interview with Ian Skerrett about Marketing Eclipse at

Video Interview with Matt Aslett

The wait is over! Finally, I found some time to revitalize and a new video after a long time is up.

It’s a great video interview with Matt Aslett, one of the best analysts regarding Open Source.

There are more video interviews in the pipeline, ready to be published, and I’ll record new ones at upcoming events I’ll attend. As you can see, I found a way how to squeeze out some time again besides having a growing business and 2 little kids. Yes, it’s possible – it only takes 18 months and someone who helps with editing the videos 🙂

Interview with Jeff Whatcott, former VP Marketing, Acquia

I interviewed Jeff Whatcott about marketing Drupal and Acquia at Gilbane Boston conference. He was then VP Marketing, Acquia and recently moved to work in the same role at Brightcove.

Jeff is probably one of the brightest software marketing experts out there and in this interview, he shares some valuable insights. Most notably, he explains how Acquia offers extended functionality in the cloud for Drupal and builds a business around this combination of Open Source and SaaS that also leverages network effects. In a way, this could make Acquia the Google of the Drupal community.

As with all videos, you can

Open Source vs. Free Software from a Marketing Perspective

While at OpenExpo last year, I grabbed the opportunity and asked Bruce Perens and Shane Coughlan to interview each other for They have done a fine job discussing the terms Open Source and Free Software from a marketing perspective. Hope you’ll enjoy the conversation as much as I did. Here are the highlights:

As with all videos, you can

Video Interview with Bryan Kirschner, Microsoft's Director of Open Source Strategy

Now playing on is a video interview with Bryan, who is Director of Open Source Strategy at Microsoft. I very much respect Bryan as a person and for what he says in the interview. His answers show that he is truly committed and understands the benefits well. Some excerpts:

So it’s really a noticeable trend where open source is clearly a part of the data centre in the IT environment. There are Microsoft technologies that are clearly a part of this.

The trend in the overall market, what we see and hear, all points to pragmatic, case-by-case evaluation of what meets customer needs, how do you combine things in interesting ways, and if you believe that open source has value, that shouldn’t really surprise you, that should just make sense.

Above video only shows the highlights. You can also watch or read the full interview with Bryan.

Fights About Information Flows in Companies Switching to Open Source

I am a big fan of Clay Shirky. He presented “It’s not information overload. It’s filture failure.” at Web 2.0 Expo NY last year – a fabulous speech you should not miss:

Shirky’s talk made Matt Asay think about how filture failure applies to Open Source which again made me realize just how true Shirky’s call for a “mental shift” in organizations applies to companies switching from a proprietary to an Open Source business model.

Such companies face a cultural change related to what Shirky calls “the fight about information flows and access to it”. The reason being that “the Internet allows large systems that are freerider-tolerant” in contrast to the offline-world where “small groups defend theirselves against freeriders”. Proprietary companies is what I’d call a “small group” regarding their mentality, no matter how many employees they actually have. Proprietary software vendors constantly strive to defend themselves against freeriders e.g. with patents and non-permissive licenses. Their partner companies benefit from being a partner because they have better access to information provided by the proprietary ISV.

Now think of a proprietary company leaning towards a FOSS business model, opening up their code and consequently also their communications. This means a lot of change, because communicating about Open Source products is essentially about communicating on the Web, where – as Shirky pointed out – large systems can evolve that are freerider-tolerant. And of course every Open Source vendor wants to have a large community. So, suddenly the gates are open and information is supposed to flow much more freely between the former proprietary software vendor and its community, which just as well includes partner companies.

In such a situation, communication tactics of employees and partner companies will have to change dramatically to sustain a successful Open Source business environment.

Interview with Terrence Barr, Community Advocate, Java Mobile&Embedded Platform

A video interview with Terrence Barr is now available online on where he provides some valuable insights in community building and he points the finger at a dilemma that every OSS business faces related to its community efforts:

We hardly ever can make the case “give us $10,000, we’ll be able to generate X revenue”. That’s just a very difficult equation to make.

Watch the interview with Terrence Barr about building Open Source communities at