James Governor's Monkchips

Gartner Ombudsman Strives for Control: Good Luck With That

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So Gartner is making some noise on ethics. Cool. It seems like it is more worried about the ethics of its customers though, which is interesting.

“Do this, don’t do that” – the new policies make Gartner sound like a nagging mom. “You can’t use the content like that. Stay out of the park.”

So now customers can’t point to the magic quadrant without also including a full research note (and paying for it?)

Gartner must be stressed out if it thinks a discussion about analyst ethics is about what its clients can and can’t do with the content it produces. Gartner acts more like a 20th century software company every day. Old line proprietary. Will it start hitting up customers about “license non compliance”?

You guys need to get easier to work with, not harder.

The transparency revolution isn’t going to go away. Nor is what’s happening on blogs. If you want to be included in the conversations you have to lower the barriers to entry, not raise them. Aren’t you watching your vendor clients? In general they seem to think this blog thing is pretty cool, and perhaps they don’t need so many intermediaries to interact with enterprise customers….

In my opinion you should post the quadrants online for bloggers to link to – that will get you some attention soon enough, and then you can drive some consulting revenues to users and vendors that want to know more. Its not rocket science. Enable information flows.

I would like to commend Gartner heartily on its use of Ombudsman. It’s one of my all time favourite words. I don’t think they achieve much in practice, but i do love the word. Command and control huh? It really is the right word to use.

Word History: The word ombudsman has one familiar element, man, but it is difficult to think of what ombuds could mean. Ombudsman is from Swedish, a Germanic language in the same family as English, and man in Swedish corresponds to our word man. Ombud means “commissioner, agent,” coming from Old Norse umbodh, “charge, commission, administration by a delegacy,” umbodh being made up of um, “regarding,” and bodh, “command.” In Old Norse an umbodhsmadhr was a “trusty manager, commissary.” In Swedish an ombudsman was a deputy who looked after the interests and legal affairs of a group such as a trade union or business. In 1809 the office of riksdagens justitieombudsman was created to act as an agent of justice, that is, to see after the interests of justice in affairs between the government and its citizens. This office of ombudsman and the word ombudsman have been adopted elsewhere, as in individual states in the United States. The term has also been expanded in sense to include people who perform the same function for business corporations or newspapers.

 Source: The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
Copyright © 2000 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.

[via Dictionary.com]










  1. its bollox – they should be ashamed of themselves

  2. And they have no RSS feed. Would you trust a guy with a smile like that ????

  3. It’s spelt bollocks – 90% certainty!

  4. What ethics should analysts subscribe to? For example, in the open source space many analysts only cover open source created by large vendors but never any software that the community creates for itself that is highly useful. One product that I would love to see covered in Liferay Enterprise Portal…

  5. yo james how are you? how about we start on some kind of joint look at liferay when i get back from paternity leave. we could do a wiki project, or something. we can start with your experiences? i have been wanting to do some collaborative architect-redmonk analysis and open source content management is as good as area as any to make a start.

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