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Company Gives Back to Open Source Community via Online Forums App at No Charge

PLEASANTON, Calif.- December 15, 2009 - Zohotoday announced that it is inviting open source projects to use Zoho Discussions, the company's online forums and community software, at no charge. Providing free use of its application for online customer support and innovation forums is the company's way of giving back to the open source community. The Zoho invitation does not have an expiration date, and open source projects can take advantage of the offer by visiting https://www.zoho.com/discussions/open-source.html.

"We use many open source components in Zoho Apps," said
Raju Vegesna, Zoho evangelist.

"As open source advocates, we want to contribute to the community, and making Zoho Discussions freely available to open source projects is our way of fostering that community and saying 'thank you.'"

Zoho Contributes to Community

The free Zoho Discussions offer being extended to open source projects is distinct from the free version of Zoho Discussions that the company offers to individuals and organizations. For open source projects, Zoho will tailor the level of service appropriate to the project's size and needs. In addition to support for multiple forums, moderators, gigabytes of attachments, and other features, Zoho will offer free migration and customization services on a case-by-case basis. Forum visitors will be able to participate by using their Zoho username/password as well as Google, Google Apps, and Yahoo! credentials.

One of the first open source projects to take advantage of the Zoho offer is the JavaScript library, jQuery. Not happy with its existing solution for engaging with its community, jQuery evaluated several vendor solutions before settling on Zoho Discussions to power its online forums at forum.jquery.com.

Prior to Zoho Discussions, jQuery used mailing lists and Google Groups to interact with its users. As part of its free offer, Zoho migrated all the data and users from the jQuery mailing lists and Google Groups into Zoho Discussions. Similarly, Zoho is customizing Zoho Discussions for free, giving the forums the same look and feel as the rest of the jQuery site.

John Resig, creator and lead developer of the jQuery JavaScript library, blogged about the transition from Google Groups to Zoho Discussions. Here's an excerpt:

"When looking for a new area to have discussions, we looked at a wide variety of solutions with a few major requirements: It had to be capable of handling both regular discussions and the now-ubiquitous question & answers that occur. Additionally, we wanted something that lowered the barrier to asking a question - something that anyone would be able to use (thus it had to have a good web interface).

"We also wanted a solution that would have a low maintenance threshold for the team. This would mean either using a hosted solution in which the team we were working with was very accommodating or using a solution that we host ourselves that was trivially easy to use and had a good community of developers.

"We ended up analyzing countless solutions but in the end we chose to go with Zoho Discussions. A combination of decisions drove us to this decision:

  • Zoho Discussions seamlessly integrates both regular, forum-style, discussions and Q&A. Additionally, all the moderation and administration tools are designed around building and managing a slick workflow for answering questions and concerns.
  • The Discussions team at Zoho have been incredibly accommodating They are not only providing all the hosting for free but going out of their way to fix concerns and integrate our full Google Groups back history. We've been working very closely with them, and they've fixed, or are fixing, every issue that we've brought forward."

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About Zoho

Zoho is a comprehensive suite of online productivity, collaboration and business applications for businesses of all sizes. Over eight million users rely on Zoho apps. Zoho's productivity and collaboration applications include Email Hosting, Document Management, Office Suite, Project Management and more alongside a host of business applications ranging from CRM and Campaign Management to Customer Support, Accounting and more. These applications are offered directly via Zoho.com or through hundreds of partners in the Zoho Alliance Partner Program. For more information about Zoho, please visit https://www.zoho.com/.

Zoho is a division of Zoho Corp., a privately-held and profitable company, which also provides IT Management Software (ManageEngine with over 70,000 customers) and a Network Management Suite (WebNMS with 25,000 Tier 1 carrier deployments). With U.S. headquarters in Pleasanton, CA and offices in Austin, Chennai, London, Tokyo and Beijing, Zoho Corp. serves the technology needs of millions of customers worldwide. For more information about Zoho Corp., please visit www.zohocorp.com.

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