Merchandising agreement

This is the public version of a report prepared by DaveNeary on 2005 for the FoundationBoard . It is useful for the GnomeWeb/GnomeStore . Some information / opinions might be outdated, let's reflect the latest status in the Store page.

GNOME needs

  • Branding - strong GNOME identity
  • Official online store
  • Control over product list

GNOME brings to the table

  • Active community, large user base
  • High traffic
  • Opens the door to other free software projects

GNOME wants

  • Infrastructure - financial, delivery, production & inventory, customer support

  • Website design & maintenance

  • Domain

GNOME gets

  • Money - percentage of sales


Suggest picking a shortlist of 2 or 3 companies, soon.

  • Shortlist 2 companies 20/4/2005 DONE
  • Discuss terms in detail (what needs discussing?) - DONE by Dave, Tim & lawyers on basis of contract received from OSF.

  • Meet vendor representative at GUADEC
  • Finalise contract by July 1st
  • Start production and plan website changes during July & August

  • Store goes online for 2.10 on September 6th

Companies contacted

(Some details stripped out, many of them might be outdated today nowadays)


  • Zazzle offers website hosting, maintenance, registration of domain name, infrastructure.
  • GNOME controls product list, website look.
  • Financial proposition: revenue share - 20% of gross (net sales price) + 7% referral.
  • Products:
    • Apparel
    • Posters
    • Greeting & note cards

Down side: No books. Haven't seen any good sites done by them yet. Upside: Good quality t-shirts. Good references.

Open Source Factory

Sven Herzberg from GNOME Deutschland made introductions with this company for us. They specialise in apparel, and are actively looking for accounts like ours.

They are part of Linux New Media, so they have a publishing wing, and book production and publishing doesn't pose a problem.

Reference sites are and

The company running Free software and fair trade friendly, they make high quality t-shirts.

All shirts are made with Pima cotton. Intimpa cotton producer. Not Fair Trade, but says that doesn't mean much in Peru. Prepared to give details of cotton production and t-shirt production facilities if it's important. Paypal for financial transactions. Shirts are made, handled and shipped from Peru. Shipping costs $7 per shirt, unit cost $3.50, unit sale price $19.99, over $50, shipping is free, under that $5 per shirt shipping to customer. We get 25% of revenue, quarterly basis. 100 shirt run minimum per product. Access to web-based sales software online.

Product line is t-shirt, polo shirt, DVD/CD with software, poster design. Small Sourcewear brand on left arm of shirts. Move to books not a problem, but no current relationship with publisher or editor.


Mail sent. Automated response.


They're into the pre-packaged software allowing people to make their own.


  • People should be able to buy stuff anywhere in the world. Non-exclusive agreement.
  • The shop site should be directly linked from the front page (and ideally from every page in the header)
  • The licencee running the GNOME shop should produce quality goods
    • DaveNeary: How can we define this? Do we just include a "quality review" clause in the licence?

  • We should be able to buy t-shirts for resale below market cost (user groups, conferences)

What to sell

  • Either the company can be wholly responsible for designs, the Foundation can take responsibility for the visual identity and specify designs, or a bit of both.
  • Minimum product list should include:
    • t-shirts and similar products (polo & sweatshirts)

    • GNOME books - see ../PrintingManual for a checklist of things to do to get manuals printed

  • Typical "stuff" on other sites also includes stickers, mugs, mouse pads, keyrings, badges.
  • We could also look into having the GNOME user manual printed and bound, as an exclusive for the site (similar to Mozilla). And perhaps the GUADEC and GNOME summit proceedings or video streams.


  • Do we require a way to audit? I think that at least to begin with, we can work on trust, and worry about this if there is a problem.

(Stripped out a whole section about producing and selling books since the topic needs total revisit)

Other organisations

(Details and subjective opinions captured on that time not published here, probably many are outdated anyway)






  • Low-key shop site

GnomeWeb/MerchandisingAgreement (last edited 2008-02-03 14:45:30 by localhost)