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Over the past ten years, nothing has impacted business more than community. Whether through the openness of software development spurred by Linux or the dismantling of media empires through blogging, the rise of communities has been the driving force in how we work and live today. But what’s next? For open source developers, what has to happen to maintain and grow the communities they’ve built? What happens to communities when successful projects are acquired by big corporate behemoths? What happens to communities when their projects fail?
Join a panel of those who get a first-hand look at what it takes to manage some of the highest-profile communities in open source: Joe ‘Zonker’ Brockmeier from OpenSUSE, Ross Turk from SourceForge.net, Jono Bacon from Ubuntu, Asa Dotzler from Firefox, and John Mark Walker from Hyperic. What trends are they seeing across their communities? What advice can they give other community managers? What’s worked and what hasn’t for them? What’s on the horizon for each of their communities?
Joe Brockmeier is a Principal Cloud & Storage Analyst for Red Hat, Inc., and is a PMC member for the Apache CloudStack project. Joe has a long history of involvement with Linux and open source, and has also worked for Novell as the openSUSE community manager. He has also spent many years working as a technology journalist, and has written for ReadWriteWeb, Linux.com, LWN, Linux Magazine, NetworkWorld, ZDNet, and many others.
Ross Turk has been with the OSTG family since 2000, and has served in multiple capacities during his tenure. Most recently, as the Engineering Manager for SourceForge.net, he spearheaded efforts to improve to the world’s largest destination for open source, including the new Software Map and Search and major navigation and aesthetic overhauls. In his current role, Ross is responsible for communicating with the SourceForge.net community and responding to their needs. During his twelve-year career, he has focused on assessing and optimizing the business and engineering processes of a wide variety of engineering organizations, always with a passion for Open Source methodologies.
Jono Bacon works at Canonical as the Ubuntu Community Manager and works to grow, scale and lead the world-wide Ubuntu community. He is the author of four books, the most recent the Art Of Community published by O’Reilly.
Bacon has a background in journalism (writing for over 12 publications and three books) and also worked as a professional Open Source advocate at the UK government funded OpenAdvantage. He is a prominent member of the Open Source community, co-founder and presenter of LugRadio, contributor to projects such as Jokosher, KDE and GNOME, organizes the annual Community Leadership Summit, and is an active musician.
John Mark Walker has been a Free Software agitator and contributor for over a decade. At VA Linux Systems, he survived an IPO and learned the ins and outs of Open Source politics. He then went on to stints at IDG World Expo (as LinuxWorld conference director), Hyperic and now Gluster.
John Mark views the opening of software technologies as an inevitable expression of long-term economic trends driving down the price of commodity software and all commoditized knowledge, for that matter. You can find his musings on Open Standards, Open Clouds and Open Technology at his blog, “There is no Open Source Community”: http://tinosc.blogspot.com/
Jeremy has been riddled with open source cooties since the 90’s. From early adopter edge of network deployments, on over the chasm to broad acceptance among the Fortune 500 and working with communities at CollabNet, Red Hat, Lulu and Hyperic.
As Red Hat’s first Community Relations Manager, Jeremy lived through the transition from boxed product revenue to subscription revenue and helped launch the Fedora Project.
Turn ons: Southern Rock, Irish Ale, Buffalo Wings, New York Pizza Turn offs: locks, gates, walls, doors, Disney and the word ‘no’