This week the UK Oracle user group is reorganising. Chairman, Debra Lilley takes on a new role as president of the council and leader of the user group. In a statement UKOUG said:
“For members, the changes mean better representation of a diverse membership, concentrated focus on member needs and ultimately a more influential relationship with Oracle.”
The user group has done extremely well at bringing on-board people following Oracle’s acqusiion spree, which has meant that along wit the traditional Oracle stable, it is now a user group for PeopeSoft users, JD Edwards users, Siebel users, BEA WebLogic and now Sun hardware users.
The challenge it faces is whether UKOUG can be focussed enough to support this diverse community of users.
The idea of a traditional user group is perhaps a tad old-fashioned. User groups represent people who push software hard and struggle to get their opinions and views heard by major suppliers. But blogging, Twitter and Facebook along with the extensive developer forums run by major software suppliers, does make the user group a bit of a pre-internet legacy. User pressure is still important but arguably, it needs to be refreshed to User Group 2.0.
As for the UKOUG, let’s hope it can remain focussed, embrace social media and build on its strengths as an independent group repesenting all Oracle users.