Hughes Blog
Thoughts on Software Development, Project Management, Parenting, and Running.
Saturday, December 16, 2006
You can't please all the people all of the time.
Last summer I wrote about a product called Freeway from LionBridge. I had forgotten all about that, until I tried to link through the LionBridge Sales Yahoo on Linked In. He refused to pass my request on to the contact that I was trying to get in touch with. Apparently he did not like what I had to say about my experience with him and my assessment of the service. He suggested that my words were "Uncouth" and "Disrespectful."


Certainly I am not a master of the Queens English, but at the same time, re-reading my post, I felt like I offered a fair assessment of the service and of his approach.

He went on to say...
As a point of clarification, Freeway doesn’t lock you into 1 supplier, just like banking with one bank doesn’t lock you into just using that 1 financial institution. Freeway is akin to banking online in that it provides our clients with a [free] facilitator of our services, supported by unparalleled functionality in translation memory management, CMS connectivity, and front-end dashboard management/reporting.
What advantage is a centralized content management system, if I can only use it with one supplier? I can use Freeway with Lionbridge and I can get my Freeway data and then manually sync that with other suppliers. Got it. I am not "locked in". But, how did that add value to my efforts? It did not. I only get business value if I limit my service providers to Lionbridge. Right?

My friend told me that Freeway was like Salesforce.Com. Its not, of course, but lets try to use the anology. If I chose to work some of my projects with Lionbridge and some of my projects with SDL, that would be like having half of my sales yahoos using Salesforce while the other half were using ACT. So the lead management team would need to get the data from both applications and work with the IT Department to create an application to synchronize that data. Now that's adding value!

So. Freeway is a lock in play. I applaud Lionbridge in its innovation. But it is what it is!

If Lionbridge want to capture our attention, then make the service available to anyone for free. Suppliers and Translators. For free. Make the service a market place where Lionbridge can compete against anyone. In that event I might be willing to use Freeway. The advantage to Lionbridge is that they have the ultimate edge in competing for services against any suppliers since they are hosting the marketplace.

And if you were wondering about my friend on Linked In, there is no need. Since he refused to forward my message, I had no choice but to nuke him as a connection. So Sorry!


What a bonehead.
I hate vendors.
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All views expressed in this post and on this blog are my own. None of my comments should be construed to represent the views of others including and not limited to: BMC Software Inc., Corel Corporation, Dun and Bradstreet and AC Nielsen. Copyright Chris Hughes 2004-2012