Bonum Certa Men Certa

Red Hat's 'Community' Face Helps Disguise Corporate Nature

Red Hat Headquarters



Summary: Disparity in pay (volunteer versus staff) and difference between perception and reality when it comes to GNU/Linux vendors, especially publicly-traded ones

Zonker was recently welcomed by Red Hat, which he used to compete against over at Novell. He was paid a salary by Novell to 'manage' a community (which is a bit of a contradiction) before he moved on to speaking for another community (which later crumbled somewhat). Canonical and Ubuntu make analogous stories of staff-run community (the company manages the community). At Canonical, the 'community' part has become a notable farce over the past couple of years.



Zonker came from a company that we criticised for having its community managed by staff. He is now acting was a bit of a spokesperson [1] as the company has been rather quiet, with only some chatter about Fedora names and Wall Street-driven discussions about the company's monetary nature [2-4].

Red Hat actually has a decent community. Some of the writers at Red Hat's OpenSource.com are not Red Hat employees and Fedora is open to many outside of Red Hat. Let's not lose sight of the importance of community autonomy. Ubuntu (especially in the past 6 months or less) became an excellent example of how not to run a community.

Related/contextual items from the news:



  1. Red Hat’s Bugzilla Passes 1,000,000 Milestone
    Bug 1,000,000 was filed today by Anton Arapov in Red Hat’s Bugzilla. The bug, an improvement request for the automatic bug detection and reporting tool (abrt), is a nice milestone just a few weeks ahead of the 15th anniversary of Bugzilla’s first release.


  2. Alliance Data Systems Moves Up In Market Cap Rank, Passing Red Hat
    Another reason market capitalization is important is where it places a company in terms of its size tier in relation to peers — much like the way a mid-size sedan is typically compared to other mid-size sedans (and not SUV’s). This can have a direct impact on which indices will include the stock, and which mutual funds and ETFs are willing to own the stock. For instance, a mutual fund that is focused solely on Large Cap stocks may for example only be interested in those companies sized $10 billion or larger. Another illustrative example is the S&P MidCap index which essentially takes the S&P 500 index and “tosses out” the biggest 100 companies so as to focus solely on the 400 smaller “up-and-comers” (which in the right environment can outperform their larger rivals). And ETFs that directly follow an index like the S&P 500 will only own the underlying component of that index, selling companies that lose their status as an S&P 500 company, and buying companies when they are added to the index. So a company’s market cap, especially in relation to other companies, carries great importance, and for this reason we at The Online Investor find value to putting together these looks at comparative market capitalization daily.


  3. First Week of October 19th Options Trading For Red Hat (RHT)
    Investors in Red Hat Inc (NYSE: RHT) saw new options become available this week, for the October 19th expiration. At Stock Options Channel, our YieldBoost formula has looked up and down the RHT options chain for the new October 19th contracts and identified one put and one call contract of particular interest.


  4. Red Hat And Other Software Stocks That May Beat Revenue Estimates (RHT)


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