[Linux-aus] linux-aus Digest, Vol 1, Issue 1500 lists.linux.org.au)

Paul Wayper paul.wayper at anu.edu.au
Mon Apr 23 02:35:26 UTC 2007

linuxaus.1.tracyanne at spamgourmet.com wrote:
> Everyone is being too parocial. And I am yet to see advertisements anywhere
> in any media, anwhere in Australia, for Linux. I see plenty for Microsoft....
> yes yes, they are a huge organisation with lots of money, but then so too is 
> Linux as a global community, that's Global community, not Australian ot US
> or European, that's Global, between us we could do huge things, what's stopping
> us - apathy, parocialism, failure of the imagination.
I agree with you here, Tracyanne, even though there are a lot of
nay-sayers on the list that think that TV is a dead medium for
advertising about Linux.  The problem is that it requires money - around
the same order of magnitude as Indy 500 car advertising - to get a
reasonable series of ads on the air at any half-decent time slot.  There
are cheaper options - interviews, features on current affairs and
technical shows like Catalyst, and so on.  Radio and print media also
have their place, but for Linux I think we really need visuals - we need
to communicate how cool it is as well as talk about freedom and niceness
and cute puppies or whatever.

And I agree with you that there appears to be a general level of apathy
toward large-scale projects such as this, beyond specific people's
criticisms.  But this is not to say that people don't care, but rather
that few people (on this list, maybe) have the time, equipment and
energy to make such any such campaign of ads, even to show on YouTube. 
I think they're desperately needed, and I have my own ideas on what they
would look like just as you do (I like yours, too).  The whole scene is
ripe for a "Linux: the real 'wow'" -style appearance that hijacks
Microsoft's banal Fista campaign.  But few of us know much about
marketing, have the necessary camera equipment and editing practice, and
have the time and resources to sit down and shoot any such project.

But don't mistake any absence of such a project for apathy toward
promoting Linux.  There are a lot of things we can do:

* Support Software Freedom Day, give out CDs and help other people
install FOSS.
* Tell people about Linux and FOSS and what you use.
* Refuse to convert other people's proprietary document formats, and get
them to send you stuff in other formats which are less locked-in.
* Promote your own LUG, Linux Australia, and any other causes you think
are worthy - you believe in the Tux 500 project, and you're promoting
that, so that's great.
* Show off Linux to other people, especially people you think might be
interested in changing.
* Demo it at computer stores and other places that might benefit from it.
* Write code.  Submit bugreports and patches.  Write documentation and
websites.  Update wikis.  Make artwork.
* Use screen capturers to write up your own page or make your own video
as a HOWTO or demo of some great FOSS.

I'd really like to hear contributions from the list here: what do other
people do to try and promote Linux and FOSS?

BTW, have you joined LinuxChix AU?  http://au.linuxchix.org 

Have fun,


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