We have just launched a pilot newsgroup focused on Collaboration software.

As you would know, the newsgroups up until now have focused on "break-fix" support - however, this newsgroup will be staffed by Microsofties from the Office Business Group, as well as the Licensing and Partner Groups - and will focus on the business opportunity of WSS, MOSS and Groove.

This newsgroup is open to all partners, so feel free to join the discussion as well.

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We are excited to add Collaboration to our managed newsgroups offering. Please note that this newsgroup is a pilot offering that will last approximately 12 weeks. After 12 weeks we will evaluate Partners’ desires to continue with this offering.

Our intent is that within this newsgroup, Partners have an opportunity to ask Microsoft product and partner staff questions around the Collaboration software business opportunity (Windows SharePoint Services, Microsoft Office SharePoint Server, etc.), versus “break-fix” questions. We have also invited MVPs and other Partners to help respond to questions.

Within this newsgroup it is our intent that you are able to:

1) Learn about the business opportunity surrounding Microsoft Collaboration software, including other Microsoft products that integrate with the Collaboration software.

2) Post questions and get answers regarding how to identify customers that would benefit from Collaboration software, and how to get customers using the software.

3) Learn about best practices and resources from your peers.

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This newsgroup will be staffed weekdays by Microsoft product and partner staff. All submissions and replies need to be made in English.

For this pilot Collaboration newsgroup, our goal is to provide a two business day response to all questions, but as we are anticipating in-depth business scenario questions, and due to resource constraints, we may not be able to respond to every question posed. We will track our success in responding to Partner questions in order to gauge the type of resources required to make a “business opportunity” newsgroup a year-round offering.