I have been getting a good deal of pressure to post my position on GRACoL G7, and have been holding off for one very simple reason. My comments will “go against the grain” as one fellow blogger put it. As one who was not involved in the process I feel that it would be somewhat counterproductive to take such a position. Which brings me to my point, why was I not involved in the process?
As a life long (adult life) student of marketing, I am very familiar with the concept of barriers to entry, and try to set them very high for anyone who chooses to play in my game (color measurement software). I think that in the professional world where one company is trying to win and to a certain extent must do so at the expense of another barriers to entry are a great thing.
Where I feel barriers to entry have no place is in the creation of industry wide standards. Let me illustrate with two examples. ColorMetrix is a dues paying member of NEPS (excellent organization providing exceptional benefits to members). As a small company our dues are a very reasonable and affordable $295/year. Payment of these dues gets us several high quality research reports each year AND membership on any CGATS group we wish to participate in. CGATS by extension provides access to ISO. It seems to me even a start-up company can afford $295/year.
Idealliance on the other hand, appears to have a minimum annual dues cost of $2,500. For a small company like ours, folks, this is a barrier to entry. Remember, this is like admission to the club; it just gets you in the front door. You still need to pay for all your own drinks. Or in the case of GRACoL all your own travel, etc. to the pressruns and any meetings being held. It is also not a one time fee, but an annual fee. I can maintain my membership in NPES for almost 10 years for that same $2,500.
This is a bit of a rant (which I have tried not to do here), but I can’t help but wonder if this barrier to entry is intentional. If you have never commented on a JimRaffel.com post…this would be the one.