[Evangelism] Article: Is Plone a Good CMS

Matt Hamilton matth at netsight.co.uk
Tue Aug 4 10:17:01 UTC 2009

On 4 Aug 2009, at 08:21, Dylan Jay wrote:

> I'm not sure where this leaves us, but I think that it is really  
> interesting that plone as a community doesn't know much about its  
> integrators. A survey on all the companies servicing plone would  
> make an excellent talk at the conference... at least for me.
> Think about it this way. If Plone were a propriatory product, the  
> mother company would know a awful lot about it's value added  
> resellers. The reason is, they are an essential part of creating a  
> successful product. Modern software companies know that enabling  
> your channel partners and resellers to make a successful business  
> means the product gets out there and in more useful ways than the  
> mother company ever could by itself. Plone as a community is as  
> interested in growth as much any propriatory company is.  
> Understanding our who our integrators are could be a valuable first  
> step to increasing it's take up.

Right. This was something I talked to Dave Shapiro (and Karl Horek  
maybe?) about at the last Plone Conf. We were talking about a 'Plone  
Census' of some kind. Using the details that are in plone.net to start  
with we were going to call/email around every company listed on  
plone.net (break it up into sections and divide to a group of  
volunteers) and 1) prompt each of them to update their details on  
plone.net. 2) prompt them about sponsorship etc. We were also I think  
going to try and get some more metrics and information from them.

I really think that plone.net could possibly do with some love  
beforehand, and bring it on brand with the new plone.org. Then maybe  
do a push to integrators after that.

I like the talk idea. What sort of form would you see it having? Would  
it be a case of a survey done beforehand and then the results  
announced, discussed etc during the talk?  There is going to a un- 
conference style day as one day of the Plone Conf in which talks will  
be spontaneously proposed, maybe it could be something you might want  
to champion there?

>> At the moment I think we are often trying to pitch against the big  
>> boys saying our system can do everything they can. But maybe the  
>> message that Umbraco is using is 'we are lighter/smaller/quicker/ 
>> cheaper etc' than the big boys. I know in reality Plone can/does  
>> use both messages.
> We generally pitch it as an enterprise system for those that want  
> more flexibility. Plone isn't really simple enough for a small web  
> consultancy to pick up for the odd jobs. It's really a full time  
> thing. We also try to sell it into the bigger market because plone  
> plone can compete where others can't... workflow, flexible security,  
> web document management, multisite deployments, so the customers  
> value it more.
> If you want something to put up a quick brochure ware site then your  
> compete against all teh cheap php coders and it's a waste of plone  
> talent.

I agree 100% with this. And I think we pitch it at a similar market to  
you guys.

What I guess I really wanted to get some thoughts on in this thread  
was the topic that Janus raised in his blog post and email... about  
Plone consultancy company sizes versus other projects (such as  
Umbraco). Does size matter? If so, why? Comparing Umbraco's 'certified  
partner' list there is 15 companies listed, versus over 300 on  
plone.net. Does the number of companies matter? Umbraco also have a  
list of 'certified developers' who have undergone some kind of test  
(10 multiple choice questions from a random pool). They have 150  
developers listed there.  We have 120 Plone Foundation members. I know  
we've talked about certification and what it means many times before  
in the Plone community, and I don't think we ever reached any kind of  

So... does size matter?


Matt Hamilton                                       matth at netsight.co.uk
Netsight Internet Solutions, Ltd.           Understand. Develop. Deliver
http://www.netsight.co.uk                             +44 (0)117 9090901
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