[FM Discuss] books and fm - need your thoughts!

adam hyde adam at flossmanuals.net
Tue Jul 29 01:04:52 PDT 2008


> Maybe a newbie question : in wysiwyg, we put easily wrong code html. Do we 
> need make a correction before publish and print the manual ? Or it's 
> absolutely not important and forget this task ?

If you write everything in the WYSIWYG editor without copying from word
processing documents or other web pages then its pretty clean code and
'ready to go'. 

However it does always pay to view the source of each page (you can do
this from within the editor) and make sure its all ok before making the
print-ready PDF - this doesn't take long. I did it for the Wikimedia
Commons book which does have some copied material and it took me about
20 minutes to clean the entire manual.


> >> *FM Book Shop*
> Actually book are more current than pdf (and ebook are not current too). So i 
> think FM can't forget this part. FM have to be a printer editor too. But 
> who ?
> Do you want take care of a FMshop book ?

I would be fine managing it. I'm quite interested, but don't let that
stop anyone else offering!

> > >
> > > *Maintainer Seller*
> > > What books are made and sold are determined by the Maintainer(s) of each
> > > manual. How they are sold is also determined by the same person(s).
> > > Profits (if any) are managed by the Maintainers.
> I think it possible if the maintainer want!!! All maintener want to take care 
> of this ? This task can afraid people to become maintener. 
> This model it's not commun, but its interresting. In the other way, If the 
> maintener want to win profits, he will work hard (writing, cheking, managing) 
> => better quality of the document.
> Furthemore, the maintaner know better than other the price of "his" manual, 
> the quality and the print needed (better than the manager - maybe-)
> We can open a poll : "Hey, maintaner are you ready to do that ? Have you any 
> interest in doing that ?"

Interesting idea.

> I am a maintaner in the french manual about Inkscape : and here is my answer : 
> Oh yes! But why it's me who get the money ? Other author have write. Which 
> status to the money (if profit). How i can give them back to the other 
> author ? 

I think this is the trickiest issue with this model. With the 'FM Book
Shop' idea there would possibly be a 'pool' of money or something from
which perhaps people could ask for $ to do Book Sprints etc. In this way
no individual would make money directly (except perhaps the manager of
the book shop might be paid something to manage the whole thing). 

However the 'Maintainer Seller' model means some might be paid from
sales and then there is the issue of who should be paid, how much, why
this person and not that person? etc....

This might or might not be a problem. I think where possible people
should get paid - so if we can help anyone make some money then fine
with me (great actually). However potentially paying people directly
_could_ deter others from contributing if they think they are just
making someone else money. 

Would it be an issue if Maintainers or the 'main contributors' for a
manual got paid but others didn't?

> > > *Independent Seller*
> > > Possibly the least traditional - we endorse _anyone_ to make and sell
> > > the books. In this case we provide the sources for the book and if
> > > someone wants to sell the books using any method and at any price then
> > > we say go for it. Profits (if any) go directly to the seller.
> What is provide the sources for the book ? FM already do that, no ?

Yes, we already provide the sources for free so anyone can sell books if
they wanted to anyway. The GPL (the license we use for the manuals) does
not prohibit commercial activity. So...actually anyone can do this
already so I guess its more a question of whether we actively promote
this as something we wish to see happen or not.

An interesting possibility for this model is if we empowered people to
become their own 'FM Book Shops'...selling manuals at events, on the
street, wherever, so they can make some $. 

Its good to remember we don't have to stick to any one model - we can
mix it up as we like.

> -----------
> Now, what i imagine :
> - for every fnished manual 4 buttons : (1) buy the pdf (for support), (2) buy 
> the book (for any use, we have to think at a pocket format too), (3) read on 
> line, (4) donation to support FM goal.
> - a dedicated page "FM bookshop".
> - To help some print project or any project we can make a call for community 
> (like LGM done)
> - The person who print the book have to know what he do. It's not a 
> automatically print of all manuals.

Interesting ideas!!!! The interesting thing about using lulu (if we
utilise this as the central print on demand service) is that it enables
us to set a mark-up (profit) for each book. 

It could be, for example, that we sell books with no profit or a set
profit, or both. We can also sell PDFs as you suggest (through Lulu). 

This would mean we can imagine the book sales (or PDF sales) as being
part of fund raising campaigns - either for  FM as a whole or for
specific projects as you suggest. I think the Libre Graphics Meeting
(LGM) raised about $13,000 USD or so with their short campaign? We
certainly could do this sort of campaign but also offer something in
exchange for the donation (eg. a pdf).


> Hope it help.
> Elisa
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > > There are questions associated with each model. I have some thoughts on
> > > these already but I would rather not shape the discussion with questions
> > > about each here.
> > >
> > > ok... _your_thoughts please!
> > >
> > > :)
> > >
> > > adam
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > >
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Adam Hyde
FLOSS Manuals

+ 31 6 2808 7108
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