[OpenStack Foundation] Use of the word "certified" and protecting brand OpenStack

Doug Hellmann doug.hellmann at dreamhost.com
Thu Oct 11 11:22:39 UTC 2012

On Thu, Oct 11, 2012 at 6:53 AM, Mark McLoughlin <markmc at redhat.com> wrote:

> Hi Tristan,
> Thanks for raising this openly. That's very healthy IMHO
> On Thu, 2012-10-11 at 08:42 +1100, Tristan Goode wrote:
> > Dear Foundation Members,
> >
> > I believe a key role of the Foundation is to protect the brand that is
> > OpenStack.
> >
> > After raising the issue with Rackspace and Jonathan Bryce several days
> > ago, yesterday I sought my fellow Foundation Board members opinion on
> > Rackspace's use of the word "certified" in media releases 6 days ago,
> ...
> It took me a little bit of digging to find out what exactly you were
> referring to, so for others reference it was the RAX "Launch Your Career
> Into The Clouds" email sent out to summit attendees which said:
>   "learn how you can accelerate your career by becoming one of the first
>    Certified OpenStack technicians. OpenStack public training classes
>    are now posted at www.rackspacetraining.com."
> The "Certified OpenStack Technician" brand should definitely be
> something that the Foundation should seek to control. IMHO, it would
> only be appropriate for training course run by the Foundation itself or
> a Foundation contractor.
> However, the response you got:
> > From: Jim Curry [mailto:jim.curry at rackspace.com]
> ..
> > Tristan,
> >
> > The email was an unfortunate mistake by our marketing team.  It does
> > not represent the official branding or positioning of our offer.  We
> > aren't perfect, and for any confusion that created I apologize.
> >
> > To be clear, our offer is a "Rackspace Certified" training program for
> > OpenStack, not "OpenStack certified" for OpenStack.  We are putting
> > our brand behind the training, not representing the brand of the
> > project itself.
> seems pretty "fair dinkum" to me :)
> The term "Rackspace Certified Technician for OpenStack" makes it quite
> clear that it's not a certification endorsed by the Foundation. The
> Foundation should encourage such programs as part of growing the
> ecosystem.
> While a training course offered directly by the Foundation sounds like a
> good idea, I struggle to see how it would be useful without focusing on
> a specific OpenStack distribution and, if it did that, it would mean the
> Foundation being seen as endorsing a specific distribution.

Agreed. It seems much more practical for the Foundation to develop criteria
by which it would give permission to use the OpenStack brand in a
certification course and then certify the training. This would allow the
courseware offerings to differ in delivery, pacing, style, etc., while
ensuring a common core of content.

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