Over the weekend, I met the president of a LUG in Michigan while I was
in Indiana. He expressed a past interest in getting someone to come to
one of his LUG meeting to talk about openSUSE. Upon closer examination,
I realized it wasn't financially feasible to make a trip to Michigan for
an evening meeting (thus also having to stay overnight) as his LUG has
only about 15 members. And I started to think about who might be closer
that can go to that specific city. (Ann Arbor)
That size is typical for a large number of LUGs out there.
I suggested perhaps we can do an online webinar of some sort, and he
liked that idea.
The more I thought about this since then, the more I think we should
organize a formal webinar program here at openSUSE. We can use these
webinars to give focused presentations to LUG groups. We can also meet
with more than one LUG group at a time, thus covering greater distances
in the same amount of time.
We could, and should, also use the same concept and service to create
openSUSE tutorials and other online presentation events that appeal to
people beyond just LUGs. For example, if we launch a new
product/service/update, we can host a Q&A webinar for journalists.
A nice online OBS webinar tutorial also comes to mind.
There's plenty of commercial software out there that we can use and not
have to worry about hosting the software. Some of us have already done
meetings via Skype to LUGs. But a) some people have an objection to
using non-free software for webinars, and b) those services can cost
money, although they provide a hosting service, thus taking away our own
need to provide infrastructure.
I think we should actively look at viable open source options and
address the feasbility of hosting it within our own infrastructure. And
then begin a formal scheduling strategy of webinar events to promote as
well as reaching out to LUGs around the world to invite them to request
a "virtual" guest speaker at their next meetings.
These meetings/tutorials offer the benefit of live interaction with the
community as well as a way to archive our sessions for those who are not
able to attend live.
Bryen M Yunashko
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