Classes Poster

Paul Smith paul at
Thu Jan 29 13:36:41 GMT 2009

On Wed, 2009-01-28 at 16:30 -0500, Martin Owens wrote:
> The reason I've posted it for peer review, is because I'm dyslexic and I
> figured people would be able to pick problems out. But the way you've
> said the copy is so bad to be unprofessional, makes me feel very bad.
> Why did you have to say it like that?

Ralph said "the words were a trimming from another poster".  I took that
to mean they weren't authored directly by anyone here but rather just
parts of text quickly pulled from of a different context and added.

I didn't mean to offend; I apologize if it came across that way.

> > We might consider just saying "Ubuntu" or "Ubuntu, a Linux-based
> > operating system".  Of course we need to get the idea that it's free
> > in there too.
> Free Software is actually more important than Ubuntu. Ubuntu is an
> excellent distro. But free software and the understanding of what it is,
> empowers people to look for themselves. We're not just about spoon
> feeding technical choices to people.

It seems to me that this is an advertisement for a service (the
classes), and the goal is to convince people that the service would be
of value to them and that they should expend the effort to show up and
take advantage of it.  By your comments below we seem to be in agreement
on that.

IMO there's little chance we can both "sell" the classes _and_ provide a
decent introduction to FOSS, Linux, GNU, Ubuntu, etc. in the space we
have available.  Terminology like "FOSS" doesn't mean anything to most
people... and those that do know what it means very likely don't need to
be reminded that Linux is open-source.  I worry that acronyms like this
turn people off as being too geeky or clique-y.  The more warm and
welcoming the poster is, the better.

At the class there will be ample time to discuss the FOSS ecosystem in
more detail.  Or, if not, we can come up with a longer, more in-depth
handout to give them then: that would be cool actually.

Again if you haven't checked out the text on the site lately
it's worth a read: I think it gives a good sense of things while still
being very accessible.

> > One last thing: if we can fit it in I think the livecd concept is a
> > great thing: letting people know they can try it on their computer
> > before installing anything at all and with no obligations might
> > convince some to give it a try who would otherwise stay away.
> I think this would drag away from the main concept of the poster. It's
> advertising classes. It doesn't need to contain the actual class
> contents.

Well, you need to tell people enough about the contents so they know why
they want to come.  And, a big part of allaying nervousness about
whether they are willing to let someone they don't know muck around with
their computer is reassuring them that it can be risk-free, and they can
go back to what they had before without any danger of losing anything.

To me this is one of the better selling points we could put on the
poster, in terms of increasing the likelihood of attendance.

However, that's up to you guys; I don't feel that strongly about it.

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