Thursday, February 09, 2006

EA Network NOT

The following note which I had posted to a Discussion Thread on the EA Network was removed by Mike Morneau, Program Manager and Administrator, Enterprise Architectures Network:




Topic: Architecture Products

The list of products included in the Architecture 'Resources' Repository (www.ITscout.org/Architecture) is growing:

Adaptive Business Process Manager
Adaptive Enterprise Architecture
Adaptive IT Portfolio Manager
Agilense EA WebModeler
alfabet planningIT
Axon Idea Processor
Borland Tempo
CA Enterprise IT Management (EITM)
Compuware OptimalJ
Enterprizer
Factiva
Factiva Synaptica Knowledge Management System
Flashmap Systems FlashAtlas
Flashmap Systems ITguide
Framework Software Structure
Grandite SILVERRUN ModelSphere
IBM Rational Software Architect
IBM Rational Software Modeler
IBM Rational Systems Developer
Interfacing Technologies Enterprise Process Center (EPC)
KBSI ProCap
KBSI PROSIM
MEGA Suite
MEGA Suite: MEGA Architecture
Mercury IT Governance Center
Microsoft Office Visio Professional 2003
Mindjet MindManager
Netspective Enterprise Frameworks Suite (NEFS)
Proforma ProVision Enterprise
QualiWare Lifecycle Manager
SiloFx Synap-c Enterprise Architecture Suite
Sparx Enterprise Architect
Telelogic Focal Point
Telelogic System Architect
Troux Compliance Management
Troux Enterprise Architecture and Planning
Troux IT Governance Platform
Troux Portfolio Management
Visible Advantage

Please send the names of any additional products you think ought to be included in the list. Also, if you can think of any articles or books that you particularly like, please pass those along as well and I will list them in the repository. Thanks in advance for your assistance.

---------------------------------------------
Jeff Tash

CEO, Flashmap Systems, Inc.
http://www.FlashmapSystems.com
tash@flashmapsystems.com
617.332.3101

ITscout
http://www.ITscout.org
http://www.ITscout.org/Architecture
http://ITscout.blogspot.com
ITscout@ITscout.org
800.381.7515


I received an email informing me that the "content was interpreted as being in violation of the EA Network's position and rules regarding posts that are commercial in nature." I was requested to exercise vigilance in future posts.

I'm not really sure what was objectionable about this content, but in the future I simply will not post to the EA Network.

7 Comments:

Anonymous Jack Krupansky said...

Welcome to the world of online communities.

Maybe it seemed like you were simply trying to "harvest" users from their online forum and capture them for your own private interaction, rather than encouraging discussion on the forum itself in a way that enhances the value of the forum.

Your post *does* sound like it's trying to promote your own web site and services, rather than simply exchanging insight with other users.

In any case, the dirty little secret of online forums is that the moderator can be as dictatorial as they wish and there is no appeal. Actually, you could send an email to "the top" of the organization and request "clarification", but I can understand if you're the kind of guy who doesn't want to "fight city hall".

In fact, your post to your own blog *is* the Web 2.0/Blogosphere preferred approach to filing complaints. Maybe now if someone searches for info on EAN in Google, they'll find your blog and criticism first.

-- Jack Krupansky

1:09 PM  
Blogger ITscout said...

Jack,

I'm really not sure how I was 'trying to "harvest" users from their online forum and capture them for [my] own private interaction,' as you suggest.

I provide access to the "Architecture 'Resources' Repository" without requiring any login. Visitors are not required to register. In fact, there's no place where a visitor can even enter his/her name.

The "Architecture 'Resources' Repository" is pretty altruistic. I'm doing a good deed here compiling a compendium of information about everything to do with architecture. I originally created it in conjuction with an IASA (International Association of Software Architects) working group where I am a member of the team. Based on my work I was awarded the honor of being named an IASA Fellow. As of this moment I'd wager that the description of my company's products, FlashAtlas and ITguide, are some of the worst in the repository in terms of their quality and comprehensiveness. Sometime soon I hope to get back to them and improve their descriptions.

The "Architecture 'Resources' Repository" includes no forum facility. There are no discussion threads. It doesn't compete with the EA Network. The only products listed on the EA Network web site are those with paid sponsorship.

Perhaps it's the issue of paid sponsorship that is at the heart of their complaint. Their email sent to inform me that my content was being removed because it was too commercial included the following closing paragraph:

"If you would like to discuss sponsorship opportunities, please feel free to let us know and we'll be glad to have our sales team get in touch with you."

Incidently, I posted the same exact note to Microsoft's MVP Architect email list (I am a member of that community). I received back almost a dozen suggestions for additional products to add to the list.

2:29 PM  
Blogger Chris Loosley said...

Jeff,

It would probably help people to understand your point better if you (a) gave a link to EA Network and (b) provided a reasonably neutral description of who they are and what the claim to do.

Absent that, I did a couple of searches, and found that the EA Network appears to be somehow related to DCI. That places your post in a quite different light. DCI has always been a highly profitable business with a PR machine that aims to make their profit motive seem to be a public service.

So if your post was not directly endorsed or solicited by DCI, and not designed with the specific intent of promoting DCI's business, it would not surprise me in the least if DCI did not approve of it. Also, don't you have to say something in your post about George Schussel being a guru in the field of information architecture or database systems if you are to earn DCI's approval? Maybe you forgot to mention that part?

4:07 AM  
Blogger ITscout said...

Chris,

DCI/Shared Insights provides learning and networking opportunities for Business and IT professionals. This includes conferences, seminars, and online discussions intended for the exchange of Business and IT best practices. According to their web site, "EA Network gives Architects, EA Practitioners, IT Leaders and Corporate Executives FREE access to timely, relevant Enterprise Architectures information."

I really wasn't trying to violate The Enterprise Architecture Network (EAN) Rules of Engagement General Forum Guidelines, listed below:

1. While discussions, idea exchanges and debates are encourage in the forum, we must disapprove posts that are of an insulting nature, deemed a personal attack or purposelessly inflammatory. We reserve the right to moderate the discussion forum and remove all posts deemed inappropriate at our discretion.

2. Please refrain from posting meaningless threads, one word (or short) nonsense posts, etc.

3. Shared Insights neither endorses nor represents any specific products/tools/solutions related to Enterprise Architecture. We try to maintain an objective, no-sell environment free of advertising, spamming and overt soliciting in the Forum. This includes using members' email links and chat message system to contact other members with the intention of offering products/services for sale.

4. EA Network is a professional business environment. As such, we do not permit posts that are objectionable in nature or violate EA Network standards. The Shared Insights team shall be the sole arbitrator of what does and what does not violate network standards.

5. Any discussion of illegal activities such as the piracy of software or other intellectual property violations is not allowed.

6. Members are permitted one login account. Multiple account registrations are prohibited.

7. In order to maintain the level of integrity expected within a professional business environment, usernames should be created using the account holder's name, initials, or a combination thereof that will afford the account holder the desired level of privacy without being objectionable or of a solicitous in nature.

8. While we encourage constructive comparative conversations about suppliers and competitor's products/tools, we will not tolerate blatant advertisements or threads that are not objective in nature.

9. No cross posting please. Post your message once, to the appropriate section and/or folder; otherwise, it may be deleted without warning -- if uncertain, please ask the moderator(s) and/or administrator(s) (e.g. Job postings: Please post under Discussions > Job Board).

10. When commencing a discussion thread, please use a title that describes the content of your post. Please refrain from using all caps or special characters unless they are of a copyrighted trademark or signature mark.

11. Discussions that present a position of a political nature not directly related to the topic of EA issues are prohibited and will be removed.

12. Commercial posts and links are not allowed - Commercial is anything that is not a personal website (i.e./ has a registered domain) or has any types of ads on it. If you are in doubt about what is okay and what is not then contact the moderator of the forum or the administrator prior to posting. Posting links containing affiliate codes may result in the thread being deleted.

13. A note about attachments: Each attachment has to be validated by a moderator to ensure security of content being posted. Therefore your attachments will not be visible immediately after your upload, but only after a moderator has validated the attachment.

-----------------------------------

I can only imagine that my posting violated Rule #12. Frankly, I didn't consider the Architecture 'Resources' Repository a commercial web site. In my opinion it offers "FREE access to timely, relevant Enterprise Architectures information" which is completely consistent with EAN's stated goals.

BTW, George Schussel sold DCI to Shared Insights. While his son-in-law still works there, George is no longer involved although he does still have some pending tax issues with the U.S. Justice Department dating back to his days as DCI's CEO.

As your comment implies, DCI had a reputation that preceded its acquisition by Shared Insights. Based on my recent experience, it certainly would appear that the cat in the DCI logo, like the proverbial tiger, hasn't changed its stripes.

4:42 PM  
Blogger Chris Loosley said...

Jeff,

Unfortunately for your allusion to the owl and the pussycat, it's actually the proverbial leopard that cannot change its spots -- a saying that derives from the prophet Jeremiah (Jeremiah 13:23: Can the Ethiopian change his skin, or the leopard his spots? then may ye also do good, that are accustomed to do evil).

Further undermining the connection you are trying to make, you have to remember that in the DCI logo, the owl represents George, while the pussycat is Sandi.

All the same, I'm inclined to agree with your conjecture.

1:55 AM  
Blogger ITscout said...

Silly me... I thought...

Jeremiah was a bullfrog
Was a good friend of mine
I never understood a single word he said
But I helped him a-drink his wine
And he always had some mighty fine wine
SinginĀ“...
Joy to the world
All the boys and girls now
Joy to the fishes in the deep blue sea
Joy to you and me

2:14 AM  
Anonymous Jack Krupansky said...

I read your comments again and I really do think that your post on the EA forum *could* easily have been construed as an atempt at "poaching", trying to get *their* users to come and do business with *you*. That seems plausibly commercial to me even if the initial transaction does not involve an exchange of money.

No matter how you slice it, your comment on the EA forum comes across as saying "And if you'd like more information on this topic, please visit *my* web site.", where your web site *has* at least an indirect commercial interest. For all intents and purposes, you forum comment was an un-paid advertisement. Not that *I* see anything wrong with that per se, but a moderator may disagree, and that is their perogative.

Clearly, the EA forum is not a "neutral" mine-free zone.

-- Jack Krupansky

1:25 PM  

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