Community Leadership as Core Open Source Competency

David Eaves thinks that community leadership is the core, make-or-break competency of an open-source software project. I agree.

He shares a story that illustrates a pattern I’ve rarely seen in the Plone community, and hope to continue not seeing. ;-)

One of the key ideas I’m interested in pushing is how “open” open source communities are – and how they can make themselves easier to join. I actually had an interesting experience while at FSOSS that highlighted how subtle this challenge can be. During one of the lunch breaks Mark Surman and I ran a Birds of a Feather session on Community Management as the Core Competency of Open Source Communities. In the lead up to the session, a leader of a prominent open source community (I knew this because it said so on his name tag) walked up to me and asked: “Are you running this BoF?” (Birds of a Feather) Not being hip to the lingo I replied… “What’s a BoF? I’m not super techie so I don’t know all the terms.” To which he replied “Evidently.” and walked away. And thus ended my first contact with this particular open source community. With its titular leader nonetheless. Needless to say, it didn’t leave a positive impression.

The lesson:

At some point everyone has to have a first contact with a community - that first impression may be a strong determinant about where they volunteer their time and contribute their free labour. Any good open-source community will probably want to get it right.

Go Reinout! PloneFlashUpload for Plone 3.0

Skimming through the recent changes in the Plone Collective, I was excited to see that Reinout van Rees appears to be tackling the task of updating PloneFlashUpload for Plone 3.0.

I’ve played around with PloneFlashUpload a bit, and it’s a really handy utility for letting users upload multiple content objects in one fell swoop. It’s particularly handy when you’re uploading Images or Files into a site.

Getting a solid, stable version of PloneFlashUpload for Plone 3.0 will be a really nice win for anyone who’s setting up a new Plone site, or maintaining a site with lots of Files and Images.

Go Reinout!