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

Tristan Goode tristan at aptira.com
Thu Oct 11 14:16:25 UTC 2012

Hi Mark,

> 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."
> 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 :)

I did acknowledge that it may be a mistake, and if it is a mistake, then why isn't being corrected?

> 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.

I'm all for Rackspace doing training, of course it's good for OpenStack, but they need to leave the Certified right out of it.

It just isn't clear. What would be clear is "Rackspace Certified Technician for Rackspace Private Cloud" or whatever their specific product is, or "Rackspace Training for OpenStack".

I note that Red Hat certifications are not described as "Red Hat Certified Training for Linux". Without exception they are listed as for "Red Hat Enterprise Linux", a clearly defined product of Red Hat.

If we have a bunch of companies offering "Certified Training for OpenStack" it'll soon mean nothing and be impossible for anyone to gauge what the hell OpenStack training is. What sort of disreputable shonks will soon offer "Certified Training for OpenStack" if the Foundation does not completely protect brand OpenStack.

> 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.

I'm not suggesting a course offered by the Foundation, that would be impractical. I'm suggesting if anyone wants to do "Certified OpenStack" or cleverly worded variants including "Certified" and "OpenStack", then that certification should meet some sort of OpenStack community standard not unlike that is expected of core project software, and the Foundation should be the only entity to have the right to sign off that a course is actually "OpenStack" and "Certified".


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