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Ogilvy Public Relations Worldwide

by lisette.paras
Category: B2B, Technology

Disclaimer: I support Novell’s PR in Asia Pacific.

On Monday, Microsoft released code for the Linux kernel community. Stories found below:

http://www.informationweek.com/news/software/server_virtualization/showArticle.jhtml?articleID=218501380

http://www.pcworld.com/article/168715/redmond_releases_code_to_linux_kernel_community.html

Two years ago, when Novell bridged the gap between Open Source and Windows,by forming an alliance with Microsoft, the Open Source community was up at arms. Novell was derided for getting into bed with Microsoft. Websites, bloggers and even journalists took sides. Novell became what one might call a second-class citizen in the Open Source community.

There were blogs calling for Red Hat to be acquired, so that they can be strong enough to fight Microsoft, because there is no one else out there to stop them.

And now, this latest Microsoft move to give up code to the Linux community. While there are a few reports saying its a move to better compete with VMWare, other commentators have said it will allow for better collaboration of virtual machines between Linux and Windows.

This could only mean good things for customers, who more and more have multiple platforms in their organisations and they just want things to work, and focus on making IT work for their organisation – not having to spend money on middleware, worry about interoperability or lawsuits.

Perhaps its a realization of Microsoft that there is no one-stop-shop solution to computing needs.

Now, tell me if I’m asking a silly question, but why is there always a rethoric of “war”, “conflict”, “competition” when it comes to operating platforms?

Yes, I believe that with competition comes innovation. But innovation can also come from collaboration, from sharing, from focusing on solving the problems.

Isnt this what the customer wants – people collaborating, proprietary coders exchanging ideas with the open source community, solving problems, looking at how applications should all work together?

And why the continuing suspicion among the Open Source community of Microsoft? Perhaps, in the past, Microsoft has not played fair.

But that’s in the past. I think the future’s about collaboration, about talking and solving problems – for the customer, for the industry – rather than conflict and competition. I believe that Novell’s relationship with Microsoft has opened the way to bigger things. It’s all about the customers and what they need to forge ahead.

The “peace” process is a long road, but it all starts with small steps, no?

“I don’t oppose all wars. What I am opposed to is a dumb war. What I am opposed to is a rash war.” – Barack Obama.

Change, we can indeed.

Enterprise technology PR professionals, stop your whining and start your engines.  So you think the media and blogging worlds are only interested in your brand story if it is centered around a CE gadget  running on 3G, delivering cloud applications and fueled by solar cells.  Not so!

The b2b tech PR community breathed a palpable sigh of relief this morning (over coffee) in seeing William M. Bulkeley’s half page WSJ print (yes that medium) story on Cutting Tech’s Energy Bill; Computer Makers See Profits in Retooling Clients’ Data Centers.

Just what should we take from this?  A perfect storm of questions more business journalists should be asking like:

a. Where is enterprise IT growth coming from?  Data centers, Virtualization, Storage – you betcha, and more.
b. How is the corporate world impacted by energy costs and how will pain on the bottom line drive adoption of power-savings technologies?
c. Should more corporations be publicly reporting on their plans to curb electricity consumption?

Clearly, interest in speaking to ‘green for dollars-sake’ has not ebbed.  As b2b tech PR professionals, it’s our job more than ever to think broadly about the constituencies who have an interest in these issues.  Listen to them and engage with them as appropriate.

What do you see as the great untold b2b stories today?   What companies are doing a good job in your view of making their enterprise technology stories relevant to broader social, environmental and economic trends?  We want to hear from you!

Disclaimer: Ogilvy PR represents HDS, Brocade, and SAVVIS who have data center power-savings initiatives.

Disclaimer: Ogilvy advertising works with IBM.

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