Slug: what-are-you-selling Date: 2000-10-26 Title: What Are You Selling? layout: post

On "Scripting News", Dave Winer writes:

"In the end it's not up to the users, it's up to the platform vendor to decide what it's used for, and then promote that as opposed to promoting the platform."

I don't necessarily agree with this. I know that UserLand had trouble selling Frontier as a platform, and subsequently moved into the web content management space with Manila. But I also know that there were a number of very successful products built on top of Frontier, including expensive ones, even when Frontier itself was free.

I think the success of a platform is closely tied to it's applications, but I don't believe that it's up to the platform vendor to tell it's users what they should be using the platform for. I think they should be communicating their vision as a vendor, and push the solutions that their users are creating. The companies building Frontier-based solutions didn't always get the most press from UserLand.

On the flip side, I know that Dave fought a long battle to get recognition from Apple for Frontier's power and elegance, and he speaks from that history, too.

It's not all cut and dried.