Spreading Ubuntu

Daniel Robitaille robitaille at gmail.com
Mon May 9 04:36:34 UTC 2005

On Sat, 2005-07-05 at 01:57 -0700, Shawn Christopher wrote:
> I sent out a mail previously in which I stated that I would host a site 
> such as Spread Firefox but for Ubuntu. This site would be a location 
> where people can post their different ideas and such about how best to 
> get users to start migrating over to Ubuntu. The reason that I am 
> writing this E-mail again is because before when I had done so it was 
> aprox 4 in the morning after no sleep and rereading the e-mail myself 
> later I realized that I had typed what seemed to be nonsense. So that is 
> my offering...basically where people can promote the #1 distro out 
> there...I look forward to hearing peoples viewpoints on this. If anyone 
> needs any examples of the setup in which I am speaking of the layout is 
> similar to http://www.spreadfirefox.com. Thank everyone for their time 
> in advance.

Personally I think this is a great idea.  Right now I think there is a
niche for a site for that type of wide-spread marketing/propaganda of
Ubuntu.  I can see some large-scale marketing done by Ubuntu (i.e the
CDs; 1 millions CDs shipped this winter was a great idea; kudos to
whoever came up with that concept), but besides some ideas seen in the
UDU wiki, I cannot say that I have seen a lot of movement in recent
weeks leading up to Hoary's release (even
http://www.ubuntulinux.org/wiki/UbuntuMarketing is months out of date).
And frankly, I don't see Ubuntu/Canonical having the resources to do it
all by themselves: this logically should be a community movement, with
Ubuntu helping (CDs, banners, marketing kits, providing big-name Ubuntu
personalities as speakers, etc)

It seems nowadays a lot of the expectations are on the local LoCo teams
to perform that grassroots propaganda, but this alone cannot be
efficient on the long-run due to various factors:

*) not a complete world-wide coverage, and results wildly variable
depending of the individual groups.

*) currently a lot of LoCo teams are still very early in their life,
thus not really organized to be efficient at it.

*) this leads to a lot of duplicate efforts; I could be in the Canadian
team, and I have no idea of some of the great ideas the German or
Italian teams are coming up for promote Ubuntu ("Group X decided to
provide Ubuntu CDs to all the libraries in their region"; "Group Y
decided to have someone dressed up in a giant Hedgehog suit and then
distributed Hoary CDs in front of a major computer store in their town")

So I can really see a site that fits right between these 2 poles:
Ubuntu  and the local teams;  and help the growth of real grassroots
movement in promoting the distro by simply being a centralized resource
for ideas and people. 

Interestingly I ran into 2 little problem this weekend that directly tie
in into this lack of easily available resources for people who want to
promote Ubuntu.  So this weekend I wanted to get 2 things:

a) a little icon "powered by Ubuntu" to put on my web server (which
obviously runs Ubvuntu)

b) a small poster to put in my office to "silently" promote Ubuntu at
work; nothing big, just a 8.5x11 small banner could be enough for my
small office.

For a), it exist, but it is really not obvious where to go and I knew
where to look simply because I remembered a mailing list post from a
long time ago: you have to search on the wiki

As for b), I didn't find any.  There is what seem to be an official shop
with Ubuntu merchandise (http://www.cafepress.com/ubuntushop/), but even
if they had posters, they probably wouldn't have a small one like I'm
looking for.

For these type of things, I can really see a "Spread Ubuntu" community
making a difference in promoting Ubuntu.

Daniel Robitaille
 GPG: http://robitaille.fastmail.fm/pubkey.asc (0x5C19F466)
 IM Jabber: robitaille at jabber.org
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