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The importance of keeping the Community Partner listings accurate

The importance of keeping the Community Partner listings accurate

Thursday 02 August 2012 3:49:57 am - 6 replies

A few weeks back I pm'd the community manager concerning this issue but I never heard back which might mean something or nothing, I can only speculate.  In any case I thought I would address my concern here and see if anyone else had any shared concerns and ideas on how to improve the validity of the listing.

My company has been committed to using eZ Publish and have used nothing else since 2005, as such we have seen a variety of partnership models come and evolve.   We have been Silver then Bronze and now a Community partner.  Personally I think eZ systems are on the right track, I am happier been a listed as a Community Partner than a bronze partner because I feel it holds different but important connotations, but I digress, that is not what this thread is about this was just to preface.

I am highly concerned about the quality of Community Partner listing, as we all are aware eZ Publish is a very niche CMS so I feel its even more important to ensure the inquiries and people "looking in" are not put off by misinformation or worse deliberately advised not to use eZ by Community "Partners".  I believe this could and probably is happening in the Community Partner arena.  I am located in Australia and I know for certain the Australian Community Partners listing is highly inaccurate.  While I won't name the companies here (I did in my pm) I know for certain that the Australian listings include companies that;

  • once dabbled with the idea of using eZ Publish several years ago
  • performed a single eZ Publish installation over 5 years ago
  • was committed but changed their policy and no longer use eZ Publish

I would suggest that if any of the above companies were contacted by a referral from this list they would do their best to convert that person to whatever CMS they now use, therefore that lead is lost to the community as a whole irrelevant of your partnership type.  That is why I strongly believe we need a mechanism to be able to have these companies removed.

I have ideas of how it could be done safely and fairly but I'd like to first hear what others think.

Modified on Thursday 02 August 2012 3:52:38 am by Brendan Pike

Monday 06 August 2012 11:15:57 am

Hello Brendan,

First, I am really sorry reading about your experience and I totally understand your bitterness.

We’re really glad to read what you write about the Community and the recognition it has in the partners’ group.  Of course, we are totally concerned about the nuisance you are pointing out and we agree with you that we have to check on partners. 

eZ Publish Community is taking a turn lately and we are revising partnership processing in order to make it more efficient.  Your message arrives on the right time and will be included in our reflexions.

And by the way, we checked in the inbox for your message, but we didn’t receive it. 

Thank you so much and don't hesitate to contact us for any matter on the Community.

Monday 06 August 2012 1:54:45 pm

Quote from Maud Brundseaux :

eZ Publish Community is taking a turn lately and we are revising partnership processing in order to make it more efficient.  Your message arrives on the right time and will be included in our reflexions.

Hi Maud

Thanks for the reply, I'm not in anyway bitter but I am concerned by the issue.  When I messaged you I sent it via the /authorcontact/form/128966 function, I even received a confirmation view from memory, so perhaps there is a bug there.

I'm pleased to read this issue is been considered, I think this issue can be resolved quite simply without any drastic measures.

All the best

Wednesday 09 January 2013 3:43:56 am

Quote from Maud Brundseaux :

Of course, we are totally concerned about the nuisance you are pointing out and we agree with you that we have to check on partners.

eZ Publish Community is taking a turn lately and we are revising partnership processing in order to make it more efficient.  Your message arrives on the right time and will be included in our reflexions.

2013 has arrived and with it the revised partnership program you spoke of.  I was hopeful but sadly I can't see the Ready and Registered makes much difference at all. I don't mean to sound cynical however if it quacks like a duck... let me know if I have this right.

  1. eZ acknowledges there is a problem with the validity of the community listing, now called "Registered Partnership" list with many listed companies no longer using eZ Publish.
  2. The resolution to this issue was to create a "Ready Partner" listing which requires an annual payment to be a part of.

Please tell me there is more to the plan than this!  All this will do is frustrate and disenfranchise those looking into using eZ Publish.  Imagine having to contact 3 or 4 'partners' before finding one that still uses and promotes eZ Publish and isn't trying to talk you into using a different CMS.

Wednesday 22 May 2013 4:47:19 am

Not that I enjoy flogging what seems to be a dead horse, but this is important.

Wednesday 22 May 2013 6:15:11 pm

Indeed, I think it's worth addressing. The core of the concern seems to be that the directory people may go to in search of eZ Publish experts contains folks who don't use eZ Publish. Addressing this will make it more likely that folks interested in eZ Publish end up staying with it because they don't find themselves talking with someone who only uses other CMSs.

First, let me welcome any comments from those who know how this concern is handled in other software communities. No need to re-invent the wheel.

If we need new ideas, perhaps one of these ideas could help:

  • Add to share.ez.no a cronjob which ensures that once a year every registered partner gets an email with a sort of re-activation link. The language could be "Are you still using eZ Publish". On clicking the "Yes" link a date field in the company content object gets updated with today's date. The cronjob also inactivates any registered company which doesn't click on the link within one month.
  • Sort out partners into active and inactive. All business partners are automatically active. Registered partners only show up as ready if their associated users have had a forum or blog post in the last year, or if the profile has been updated in the last year, or if a project or badge has been awarded in the last year, or if a certification was added in the last year.
  • Add a field so registered companies could manually list what year they most recently did eZ Publish work. Utilize this field in sorting, and list as Inactive companies which haven't done anything in a year or two.

Of course, allowance may need to be made for companies which don't do development but want to be part of the ecosystem. Perhaps we need to further specify that, so hosting partners, training partners, etc. can register, but somehow facet the search results so people looking for a developer will only see developers.

Modified on Wednesday 22 May 2013 6:15:47 pm by Greg McAvoy-Jensen

Thursday 23 May 2013 4:01:43 am

Great response Greg!

Any one of your ideas would make a considerable difference to the current state of affairs.  All your points are self maintaining and honesty based which I like as it has a higher chance of been adopted by eZ.  I also think that even though its honesty based it would solve 99% of the issue.  I don't think that any of the Australian listings I've mentioned are been deliberately misleading its just that they used/tried eZ once and moved on.  While you can come back to delete your listing of course they aren't going to do that because its a free listing and isn't hurting them.  But I think if queried directly on their current eZ activity I think that most people would be honest.  If you cronjob idea had a link to confirm their continued use of eZ Publish and a compulsorily url field of their last eZ Publish website then this would be adequate, I would suggest this cronjob be run every 3 to 6 months. It could even be then possible to report dishonest listings. We could then report dishonest should they occur to eZ.

Even ordering the listing more sensibly would be of some help, for example I'm at the very bottom even though I'm the most eZ active (if not the only). I suspect they are ordering by most recently created at the top, so inadvertently putting the oldest (in many cases the most experienced) at the bottom.  Another element could be a more overt recent activity indicator.

Can we have some official input from eZ Systems please.

Modified on Thursday 23 May 2013 4:14:55 am by Brendan Pike

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