[ubuntu-uk] getting help - UK List

London School of Puppetry lspinfo at gmail.com
Mon Jan 29 21:19:44 GMT 2007

I understand exactly what you are saying.  But no-one would expect anything
for nothing. If my neighbour is paying for a local Windows chap to do an
hour's work sorting her crashing computer out then surely there has to be
the equivalent Ubuntu person? Her chap goes from appointment to appointment
and designs and builds web sites in between. Caroline

On 29/01/07, Alan Pope <alan at popey.com> wrote:
> On Mon, 2007-01-29 at 19:33 +0000, Matthew East wrote:
> > On Mon, 2007-01-29 at 17:45 +0000, Alan Pope wrote:
> > > On Mon, 2007-01-29 at 14:54 +0100, Matthew East wrote:
> > > > On Mon, January 29, 2007 1:10 am, London School of Puppetry wrote:
> > > > > is there a list somewhere of Ubuntu experts
> > > >
> > > > There isn't such a list for the UK. However, developing one would be
> a
> > > > very worthwhile task for this team to carry out - face to face help
> is a
> > > > very important type of help which is much more difficult to find for
> > > > Ubuntu than it should be.
> > >
> > > How would you envisage such a list operating?
> > >
> > > Would this be a "not an Ubuntu official partner, but willing to help"
> > > type list?
> >
> > There is already one of those: http://www.ubuntu.com/support/marketplace
> >
> Yes, I was aware of that, wanted to clarify what you were suggesting.
> > What I had in mind was more something by way of freely available
> > community support.
> I always find that a little tricky.
> For me (whether right or wrong) I like to choose how and when I
> contribute to the community. As with everyone else I have a limited
> amount of time to spend between this/that/theother. I also (as with
> everyone else) have requirements to pay bills and feed myself and the
> family. So this leads to a careful(ish) balancing act between:-
> a) Work - stuff that pays bills
> b) FLOSS stuff - contributing to the community for free
> c) Other - family stuff etc
> If someone were to pay me to do b) then I could do less of a) in order
> to do c). If I were to advertise my free services then the balance might
> tip more towards b) detracting the attention from those vital c) and a)
> sections.
> At the moment I can walk away from a computer, not looking at the
> support tickets, mailing lists, email (to do a) or c)) knowing that they
> will either pile up and I will have to go through them when I get back,
> or someone else will deal with them.
> If the contact is direct via email/phone/IM/whatever then the system of
> one-to-many turns into one-to-one. This is of course potentially
> beneficial to the recipient of the help, but less useful for the helper.
> More of my time would be dedicated to helping one individual - and
> whilst that would be a fulfilling task, it's not time efficient. Think
> of all the other people who have the same problem now or in the future
> who will not benefit from the private conversations between myself and
> the person I am helping.
> I would say we are better off pointing people to the support ticket
> system, as there are many eyeballs on it. For example I was going like e
> demon on that between October and December last year, but this year have
> barely touched it due to other commitments. Do the people asking
> questions get no support as a result? No, because there are loads of
> other committed people who the work load-balances around.
> Compare that with the person down the road who needs some one-on-one, if
> I am away doing a) and c) then they are left in a situation where they
> may mail/phone/IM/whatever me and get no response, or get a very delayed
> response. How does that look/feel for them? In addition as I focus my
> attention on them, talking them through whatever issue they have, what
> happens to all the other people who are waiting for their support
> tickets to be answered in a way that will benefit future google-users?
> I appreciate some people need a little hand-holding, I really do. But
> when someone is desperate for help (machine wont boot) they will expect
> the person helping to drop stuff to come over to help won't they? That's
> how I often find people with problems.
> I know I have worded this mail from my perspective, but I am pretty sure
> it's not far off how many people feel about helping with the community.
> Am I out of order / hypocritical / wrong? Please tell me. I would like
> to offer as much time and support to the community as I can, but I like
> the idea of time-inefficiency built-in.
> Cheers,
> Al.
> --
> ubuntu-uk at lists.ubuntu.com
> https://lists.ubuntu.com/mailman/listinfo/ubuntu-uk
> https://wiki.kubuntu.org/UKTeam/


London School of Puppetry
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