Become a fan of Slashdot on Facebook


Forgot your password?

Independent Software Vendors Get Organized 47

joshorion writes "The Organization of Independent Software Vendors has just launched with the purpose of helping the community create and market their independent software. Experts contribute helpful articles, and members can make use of the forums. The site is sponsored by many notable companies, primarily CoffeeCup, but also CNet, Tucows, VanDyke, and Lunarpages."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Independent Software Vendors Get Organized

Comments Filter:
  • by Mikachu ( 972457 ) <> on Tuesday June 13, 2006 @05:07AM (#15522558) Homepage
    Finally. This should have been created a long time ago. Independent software companies have it really hard; it's difficult to compete with the big corporations, who have enough money to control the market through advertising and teaming with other companies to monopolize. This should be a good start at fighting back.

    Good idea, I think.
  • by Schraegstrichpunkt ( 931443 ) on Tuesday June 13, 2006 @05:10AM (#15522565) Homepage
    From their About [] section:
    The OISV is the Largest Organization of Independent software vendors, marketers, retailers and distributors in the World! Our membership represents thousands of software professionals who create, sell and supply shareware and trial software in 90 countries.

    So, I guess they're an organization of mass-market proprietary software vendors. That's fine, but why do I worry that they'll pretend to actually represent the vast majority of software developers (who actually custom software which may or may not be proprietary)? It even looks like they're trying to pass off their "site technologies" list as a list of endorsements from major open-source projects. I really hope this isn't just a front for DRM proponents.

    On the other hand, they'll probably be against software patents, and in favour of real open standards (e.g. ODF) and net neutrality, so maybe I shouldn't be so worried. Their mission statement seems good, in principle.

    • Should have hit preview...

      s/who actually custom software/who actually develop custom software/

    • by Eivind ( 15695 ) <> on Tuesday June 13, 2006 @05:29AM (#15522606) Homepage
      People, especially those outside the industry, continously miss this point.

      When you say you're a programmer, peoples first thougth is that you had some hand in creating some software that can be bougth shrink-wrapped somewhere.

      As you point out, that's really the exception. My guess is that atleast 90% of all the programming dont today is never ever going to end up being sold shrink-wrap.

      • Some estimates say that as much as 90-95% of software development is used 100% in house and will never even be seen - let alone used - by anyone else. From all the custom apps that I've built in various jobs, this feels right, but I have nothing to back it up.

        Disclaimer... I guess I'm technically a charter member of OSIV.
        • by Eivind ( 15695 ) <> on Tuesday June 13, 2006 @08:05AM (#15523010) Homepage
          Alan Cox had a good take on that when visiting us at BLUG in Bergen. He was lecturing a large hall of people, say 600 persons, and where taking questions.

          Someone, presumably a journalist, asked if having everything Open Source wouldn't mean all programmers to loose their well-paying jobs.

          Alan didn't reply, but he asked two questions: (paraphrasing from memory)

          • How many here have been, at some point, paid to write or maintain software ? Hundreds of hands went up. (nerd audience, naturally, who goes to a Alan Cox lecture a saturday evening ?)
          • How many here have ever been paid to write proprietary software that can be bougth shrink-wrapped ? Literally 2-3 hands went up.
  • OISV (Score:4, Interesting)

    by William Robinson ( 875390 ) on Tuesday June 13, 2006 @05:11AM (#15522567)
    The logo of the OISV is a brand of a professional in the software industry and can be trusted wherever it is displayed.

    How are they going to achieve this? Will there be evaluation of companies?

    The mission statement looks kool, but does not explain WTF 'independent' means. Am I qualified if I am running a startup?

    End of the day,seems to be a good effort to bring quality software to us.

    • Re: OISV (Score:3, Funny)

      by gidds ( 56397 )
      My first thought was that they really meant 'independent of Microsoft'...

    • Membership to the OSIV is upon approval only and members are accepted on their past, current or future involvement in the software industry

      Sounds like you are "in" if the other cool kids like you.

      With no objective criteria (sales volume, number of employees, anything?) it is pretty vague.

  • Independent? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by k1980pc ( 942645 ) on Tuesday June 13, 2006 @05:34AM (#15522616)
    I guess almost all software developers are independent (Some people in my company still don't think so - that's off topic). How does any vendor qualify for this independence? Mostly, I feel what they plan to come out with is a guild for small businesses. Anybody who codes in their basement and sells on net using paypal or any business that has, say less than 10 employees. It seems a good idea but I am sure it won't take long for some corporation to sabotage it. You know, make it a breeding ground for good or innovative ideas and then buy it out. Already we can see the signs in Microsoft Office Live and stuff.

    Hmm..Why am I so pessimistic about this..
    • "How does any vendor qualify for this independence?"

      They had to be one of the 15 republics that broke off from the former Soviet Union.

      Or perhaps that's the Commonwealth of Independent States.

    • I often ask the same question with music. A band would be independant if they produced their own music, and didn't sign under a label. But then there's so called Independant labels. How big can a label be before not being independant. Maybe if they aren't part of the RIAA then they are independant, but what if a bunch of non-RIAA labels joined forces? Would they cease to be independant? Once all these software companies join forces, are they really independant? For me Independant music often just mean
    • I guess almost all software developers are independent (Some people in my company still don't think so - that's off topic). How does any vendor qualify for this independence?

      This organization looks like bunk. The origin of ISV came from the bowels of Microsoft - it was used to denote independent vendors creating software for the Windows platform (e.g. they were creating for Microsoft's platform, but were independent from Microsoft - ISVs). Using it as a general term for software firms is inane and nonsensic
      • I should add the clarification that I don't know what fee(s) they charge, if any. Nonetheless, self-employeeing through toothless organizations is hardly a new or novel concept.

        And somehow I suspect that Microsoft's Partner program is a world larger and more popular than this one.
  • "many notable companies, primarily CoffeeCup"? Also, is this group supposed to include ISVs like Adobe and SAP?
    • I believe CoffeeCup spearheaded the creation of the organization and development of the site, but certainly they aren't the largest company in the group. Poor wording on my part.

      I doubt Adobe and other huge ISVs will join (or even be accepted), since they don't need the same level of help and organization. The OISV focus is really more on helping the little guys.
  • Is this organization something like "The Lone Rangers"?
    • For those that don't get this, it's from the movie Airheads. A three-member rock group that calls themselves, "The Lone Rangers". The DJ queries:

      Ian [DJ] (Joe Mantegna): "The Lone Rangers?"
      Chazz (Brendan Fraser): "Yeah...what's wrong with that?"
      Ian: "There's 3 of you, you're not exactly lone."
      Chazz: "I have no idea what you're saying right now."

      There's actually a fansite for The Lone Rangers []

  • w00t! (Score:1, Offtopic)

    by rehashed ( 948690 )
  • ASP fork (Score:5, Informative)

    by BortQ ( 468164 ) on Tuesday June 13, 2006 @06:59AM (#15522810) Homepage Journal
    This new group is a direct fork of the old Association of Shareware Professionals []. Some of the ASP board members resigned in disgust and started up this OISV. I agree with some of their points that the ASP is hopelessly stuck in the past. I joined the OISV to see where it goes (and to get the free T-shirt. I thought that showed an excellent marketing spark that bodes well for the organization).

    Here's a mass email I got that shares some of the dirt:

    Subject: CoffeeCup Relinquishes Our ASP Membership

    Fellow ASP Member,

    I am sorry to say that the current board has lost Scott Swedorski as a Board member of the ASP over issues he strongly believed in. One issue was me. I had no idea until today that Scott and Ryan Smith nominated me for a Lifetime Achievement Award. I was very honored they did that, it was nice. The board voted this down though even though I was the only person nominated by more than one person. Scott got fed up and resigned for very good reasons. It just didn't make sense not to give me the Award unless it was personal.

    Now honestly I don't have a chip on my shoulder or care that much about a plastic award. I have lots of them and a successful software business to back it up. Success counts, not a pat on the back from the industry.

    What I do care about is respect. Saying that myself, Winzip, or C|net can not be recognized by the ASP because we don't post in newsgroups as much as other people is a farce. We run successful businesses and do not have time to post as much as those people that are less successful. Those are just the facts. I have been a member for 10 years when most companies that grew as much as we did would have left and never stood by the ASP or it's members again.

    I have talked to and helped more people one on one by e-mail and at SIC then any current board member of the ASP or the SIC. There is no doubt about that. I have also brought some deeper thought to my posts in .marketing and hope I have helped you where simple answers were not the best guides to get you through day to day.

    I have also had countless people join because 'I' was a member and many companies including Tucows came to SIC and joined the ASP because I invited them, not by the SIC or the ASPs invitation. started participating more because I asked them too and I talked with them for many hours over it. As some of you are aware we threw a party at SIC every year for members that cost us between $5,000 and $20,000 a year. And not a single thank you from either side of the street, ever.

    The ASP is in trouble people. The budget is bad and it's marketing to get new members is even in worse shape. The logo and the Website are so awful, I would never join if I saw them. There are too many people with good intentions but there is no action. (and action beats intentions every day of the week)

    When we volunteered to create the new ASP Website 1 1/2 years ago we never heard a thing from the Board or Ed Pulliam. We are the most qualified in Web Marketing and Web Design of any member the ASP has ever had but the board did not want 'me' to do it. They did not contact us and refused our help because they do not want to acknowledge that we are the face of change for the ASP. The way things were done for the last 10 years is now over. If the ASP wants to succeed or even survive they will need new voices of change and they will need them quickly.

    You will all need a new board soon so vote well; and I am sorry, Ed Pulliam is not qualified to be President of the ASP. He is full of great intentions but no true action. I have been to his Website at and if this is the direction he wants the ASP Website to go in, the ASP is in bad shape. It's not personal, just an observation that I am sure many can see. He failed at the ASP marketing plan and should not be president. If he worked for CoffeeCup I would have let him go. It's not personal though, I am sure h

  • Just in case ISVs want to develop efficiently cross-platform application there's a helpful article at NewsForge ( 859243.shtml?tid=89 []).

    O. Wyss

God made the integers; all else is the work of Man. -- Kronecker