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Re: RedHat attitude

From: Kevin Brown <kevin(at)sysexperts(dot)com>
To: pgsql-advocacy(at)postgresql(dot)org
Subject: Re: RedHat attitude
Date: 2002-12-16 23:59:54
Message-ID: 20021216235954.GD20180@filer (view raw, whole thread or download thread mbox)
Lists: pgsql-advocacy
Marc G. Fournier wrote:
> On Mon, 16 Dec 2002, Kevin Brown wrote:
> > But by doing so their efforts at promoting their database do nothing
> > to help spread the adoption of PostgreSQL.  That is, they do nothing
> > to improve the mindshare of PostgreSQL.  In fact, their efforts
> > *hinder* PostgreSQL's mindshare.
> How?  Do they have a team of non-paid developesr working on their
> code?

That has nothing to do with it.

You *have* to think of this from the perspective of the customer,
because in marketing it's the *only* perspective that counts.

If the customer acquires RHDB, they'll think they've got RHDB.  Only
if they bother to do a bit of digging will they find that they
actually have PostgreSQL.

Now suppose that a friend of theirs comes to them for a database
engine recommendation.  The customer, being very happy with RHDB, will
recommend it to their friend without reservations.  And so their
friend acquires RHDB itself.  The userbase of RHDB grows over time
through this.

But relatively few of these people know that RHDB is actually
PostgreSQL, so the mindshare of PostgreSQL does not benefit from the
mindshare of RHDB.  Similarly, the mindshare of RHDB does not benefit
from the mindshare of PostgreSQL.  Because they are named differently,
uninformed people who are evaluating database engines *will treat them
as separate, competing products*.

And mindshare is one of the factors (perhaps the biggest one) many
people use to decide which product to use.  And they're not entirely
wrong for doing so, either, because the mindshare a product has is
directly related to how well supported (in terms of availability of
tools, knowledge, etc.) that product is.

> > I would be much happier if they called RHDB something like "RedHat
> > PostgreSQL Server", just like they call their distribution "RedHat
> > Linux".
> And if, at some point in the future, they drop PostgreSQL and take on
> MySQL?  Or Oracle?  I'd rather have that kinda hidden behind the name
> myself ... that kinda thing would do more damage then not naming it RedHat
> PostgreSQL in the first place, no? :)

Oh, I'll not argue that naming it RHDB has certain benefits for
RedHat!  But that's not exactly the point.  I'm looking at this from
the standpoint of what's good for PostgreSQL, not necessarily what's
good for RedHat.  They're not necessarily the same thing, as this
thread illustrates.

And besides, "RedHat Oracle" has a nice ring to it, don't you think?

> BTW, can someone explain to me how this whole threads helps us in
> any way?  Just cause you don't like the name, they aren't going to
> change it ... so wouldn't that energy be better spent in other
> aresa/

It helps us because, by making this issue clear and the consequences
of product naming clear, we illustrate to those who advocate
PostgreSQL why they should discourage distributors from labelling
their PostgreSQL-derived database engine something that doesn't
include "PostgreSQL" in the name.

This is an advocacy list, after all, so marketing strategies and
information are what it's all about, yes?  :-)

Kevin Brown					      kevin(at)sysexperts(dot)com

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