Blender Network - an open business network for professionals

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ton
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Blender Network - an open business network for professionals

Postby ton » Sat May 14, 2011 7:50 pm

Full text is here:
http://wiki.blender.org/index.php/Org:F ... derNetwork

Feedback & duscussion is welcome here :)

-Ton-

blendtuts
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Location: Valencia, Spain

Postby blendtuts » Mon May 16, 2011 3:01 am

I find this a great idea! Available Technical support can be an incentive for studios to start using blender :D

Well, that's just one of the possibilities of the Blender Network, but that took my atention :)

Klutz
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Location: Norway

Postby Klutz » Mon May 16, 2011 5:30 am

Just two minor points:

1. I feel there should be a possibility for "observer" memberships. For example, while I work with design, it's not 3D design, yet I'm very interested in (and fascinated by!) everything Blender. It would be nice if it were possible to gain admittance to the network for hobbyists and others for a lower sum; it would contribute financially to the BF and make it possible for interested parties to follow the professional users' activities.

2. As to the question 'How to manage tags when A asks for "Bizz contact" and B only wants to be "Friend"?': I'm member of a professional culture/art network in Norway, and there you can designate another member differently from that member's classification of yourself. It mostly affects what threads are given on-screen priority when you log on, gives you the ability to send messages to one of your groups of assoiciates aso. I see no problem in two users classifying each other differently. But of course, it all depends on what function the "classification" is supposed to have within the network.

sebastian_k
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Joined: Mon May 16, 2011 3:01 pm

Postby sebastian_k » Mon May 16, 2011 3:13 pm

That's a great list and pretty much includes everything I would expect form the official Blender network!
Though I would rather not call it www.blendernetwork.org, but instead go with the second option, network.blender.org. There are so many sites starting with "blender" (blenderguru, blendernerd, blendersupportdesk, blenderfun, whatever) that I think it would be good to distinguish the "real thing" from these. network.blender.org looks nice and official. Although probably the domain blendernetwork.org should redirect to that site too, just in case.
But everything else looks great.
Being able to search for blenderprofessionals and -studios by category, country or town would be awesome.
Looks very promising!
Now give it a great design and good options to link in support services etc and we have the missing professional link to the industry! :)

victorphellipe
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Location: Brasília, Brazil

Postby victorphellipe » Mon May 16, 2011 7:37 pm

Hi,

Very nice! When it's done, I'll join of course! As it seems to be under discussion, I wonder if I could give my opinion, so here it is. Is BlenderNetwork a kind of a professional users' list? If no, please disconsider the text below :oops:

Do you guys know People Per Hour? It's a website with the same objective as BlenderNetwork, but covers all kind of professionals (Web, Design, IT, Accouting, Translation...). PPH have 3 kind of member:
    Free: have right to make 10 bids/month and 10% of service is charged.
    Gold: have right to make 40 bids/month and 5.5% of service is charged.
    Platinum: right to make 80 bids/month and 4.5% of service is charged.
    There is no difference between members' bids, even if the user is a free member. More info here: http://www.peopleperhour.com/freelancer ... _works.php
So PPH is always earning money, even from free users. And I think if a system like this should work in BlenderNetwork. For example:
    Academic member: can just make bids which value is less than $X and Y% of service is charged.
    Freelancer member: can just make bids which value is less than $3X and nothing is charged for service.
    Corporate member: can make bids in any value and nothing is charged for service.

So an Academic member will be able to compete with a Corporate member inside his (academic) account limit. Blender Network earn with free member and, in the same hand, If the user is benefiting of the service, we are encouraging Academic member to pay fee to be a Freelancer or Corporate member to compete with higher bids.

Well, I think is a good ideia, but I don't know if this could work properly or if this fit in your main idea of what BlenderNetwork would be. Just testing :)
Cheers,
Victor Phellipe.
Portfolio: http://victorphellipe.tk/
http://blender.com.br/

tischbein3
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Joined: Sat Jun 17, 2006 2:36 pm

Postby tischbein3 » Mon May 16, 2011 9:53 pm

An Open Business network, like the yellow-pages for Blender professionals. All information is open to view for everyone, also without logins.

Making contact details aviable without a login is a good idea,
although I would prefer to have the abillity to control wich information (especially contact) are aviable to unregistred /only registered people.

as for blendernetwork vs network.blender.org: I would suggest to redirect from the first to the second. network.blender.org has a more offical touch, while blendernetwork would be more recogniseable for the less blender-heads.

chris

Grandmaster B
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Postby Grandmaster B » Tue May 17, 2011 1:34 pm

We use Blender for three years in our company. From my current POV i mostly do not like the concept.

The membership options are evil, it leaves people out by definition (even me, using Blender as an professional) or let them charge for services they dont need. The rest of the concept is too basic to tell if its usefull or not. I like some directions but dislike others...

I also fear that you underestimate the work and required knowledge to build such a network, i can tell that this is not a job for ordinary web designers.

ton
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Postby ton » Tue May 17, 2011 2:36 pm

Klutz wrote:Just two minor points:

1. I feel there should be a possibility for "observer" memberships. For example, while I work with design, it's not 3D design, yet I'm very interested in (and fascinated by!) everything Blender. It would be nice if it were possible to gain admittance to the network for hobbyists and others for a lower sum; it would contribute financially to the BF and make it possible for interested parties to follow the professional users' activities.


My preference would be to have all information on the site open and visible for everyone, also without accounts or logins. The benefits of being an official partner is mostly that you are presented there. But anyone should be able to find out who's in the network, what they do, who they are connected with and how to contact them. That's the "open business" idea.

ton
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Postby ton » Tue May 17, 2011 2:42 pm

tischbein3 wrote:Making contact details aviable without a login is a good idea,
although I would prefer to have the abillity to control wich information (especially contact) are aviable to unregistred /only registered people.


This might be for some cases relevant, we'll investigate it.

However, the minimum is obviously to have similar public contact info as companies put on their own websites anyway. A company with a complete anonymous website is usually only raising suspicions.

ton
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Postby ton » Tue May 17, 2011 2:50 pm

Grandmaster B:

It's certainly not the purpose to exclude people who use Blender professionally. First off; keep in mind this mostly a public directory where you can find support, help or other services. That info will be fully open, and you or your company can access it without fees or memberships.

I'm aware that for many professional users of Blender (artists) a Network membership doesn't have much to offer (unless they want to advertise their bizz). An important target however is to help setting up services for professionals (like you!), for such people or companies this program can help well.

BTW: we're not asking "ordinary web designers" to help implementing this. :)

ton
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Postby ton » Tue May 17, 2011 2:57 pm

victorphellipe wrote:Hi,
Do you guys know People Per Hour? It's a website with the same objective as BlenderNetwork, but covers all kind of professionals (Web, Design, IT, Accouting, Translation...).


Interesting website! It's a bit intrusive though... and mostly aimed at individuals (freelancers). I rather don't make our system complex by demanding revenue shares or requiring contacts to go (only) via the network. That goes against the "open" principle for me.

If membership fees appear to be a blocking aspect, I'd rather look into other ways to cover our costs for the network site & moderating.

stiv
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Postby stiv » Tue May 17, 2011 4:04 pm

If membership fees appear to be a blocking aspect, I'd rather look into other ways to cover our costs for the network site & moderating.


I do not see the fees as a show stopper. Academic membership is free, Freelance is the cost of a cheeseburger per month, even Corporate is nominal for a business.

I realize everywhere is different, but where I am...

...these are business expenses and are deductible from your taxes.

...this is, in one sense, a form of Yellow Pages - a directory listing put out by the phone companies where businesses pay to be listed by category. Nice for finding someone to fix your car, or a technical director for your movie!

A lot of the Blender Community is starting to use LinkedIn for informal networking ( www.linkedin.com ). Here we are talking about something focused strictly on Blender.

Bottom line: I like it.

Grandmaster B
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Joined: Mon Feb 08, 2010 11:49 am

Postby Grandmaster B » Tue May 17, 2011 4:05 pm

Thanks for your response Ton. Sorry for poking you before, its not that i have doubts in the project! I just do not want you to start sailing in the wrong direction.

What you responded sounds already different than the current concept document. I don't see a problem in paying a fee for services/features. I like to propose to categorize an entity (person/company) from what he -wants- rather than from what he -is- (especially on a service based network). If a corporation or freelancer just wants to fool around, why not let him. He probably will get more serious later. That also means to charge for each service seperately or free choice of the membership grade (maybe monthly).

antibody
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Location: Anapolis, BRASIL

observer memberships

Postby antibody » Tue May 17, 2011 4:39 pm

[quote="Klutz"]Just two minor points:

1. I feel there should be a possibility for "observer" memberships.

Strongly agree with this point, I am trying to become a more "professional" Blender and introducing Blender in the central west of Brazil (Anapolis-GO), where - as far I am aware - nobody knows about the existence of this open source software. People are quite creative here, but work meanly with ripoff versions of Photoshop.
So have access to network.blender.org would be very helpful

-=b=-

(Ton more or less answered already this point)

WTomi
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Joined: Tue May 17, 2011 4:30 pm
Location: Stuttgart

Postby WTomi » Tue May 17, 2011 4:56 pm

Offering professional support will always be judged from response time and quality. I know, the yellow pages do not show, if plumber A is better than plumber B, but perhaps similar to Amazon a report for each service can be added, giving the next customer some more hints and information about the provider.
If this will not be offered here, the clients will do it themselves somewhere else, less observed and without quality control of the answers.

Nice idea, a lot of work.


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