The Skeptical Informer, May 2007, Volume 1, No. 4
The newsletter of the IT Skeptic. All the IT skeptical news that is fit to print... and then some!
One ITIL V3 author told me I am a "terrier snapping at the heels of the establishment", and I know that hurts the owners of the heels. On a personal level I'm sorry for those I hurt who act honestly with the best interests of the ITIL commnity at heart. I hope you can believe that I respect what you have done with ITIL Version 3 - it isn't perfect and I don't agree with everything, but it is a magnificent body of work. Again, congratulations!
For those who act with selfish or corrupt motivations, I have no sympathy. The blog's primary purpose is not to expose you, but I don't mind if that is a secondary effect.
A comment on the IT Skeptic blog suggested I am obsessed with the ITIL Version 3 Launch. I replied:
I don't think I'm obsessed. I am, in effect, a journalist. Not that I chose to be but that is another story. There is a huge vacuum of open discussion and debate around ITIL that this blog seeks to fill. The Refresh is the big story, the topic on everybody's lips right now, so I report it. Or maybe I'm obsessed. Let the readers judge.That is this month's theme, transparency: whether it be transparency of the process of creating ITIL V3; transparency of the decision-making processes behind ITIL; transparency of the governance of the vested interests feeding off ITIL; or transparency of governance of the association which is supposedly owned by us, its members (even if it does not, by definition, exist to represent our interests).
I'd like to get onto some other topics actually but OGC and itSMF keep alternately leaving this void and then providing me all this great material. I look forward very much to the ITIL world becoming so boring that I can look at other topics on this blog, and go do a few other projects that might pay better :-)
You imply that I am delving into unimportant minutae. Tell that to the Japanese and the Canadians. I for one would be interested in the reasoning behind the change [of countries for the launch roadshow] and I bet they would too. It's called "transparency".
For those who wonder what the hell I am on about, go see if you can answer the following seemingly simple questions:
- What are training vendors supposed to say to people who ask them for V2 training?
- What are the new consistent rules for accreditation of training organisations for V3?
- On what basis were the seven countries for the launch selected? Ask to see the minutes of meetings of the Board of your organisation, the itSMF, or of any other body runnign ITIL
- What is the formal commercial relationship between OGC and itSMF and between TSO and itSMF? On what basis is itSMF organising the worldwide launch of V3 instead of OGC?
- Why do the eight Global itSMF members (all poor, down-on-their-luck international mega-corporations) get deep discounts on V3 that go a long way towards paying back their subscription, while local branches carry the burden of servicing their staff without reimbursement from itSMFI?
- What are the allegations against itSMF USA's last Board elections? How long has the Board really known about them before finally being forced to act?
- What were the vote counts by IPESC for the V3 books, and what were the comments and discussions around them by the people who represent we itSMF members?
- How was the architecture of V3 derived from the 400+ submissions? Can we see the submissions to draw our own conclusions about what the user community wanted?
- What were the views of the reviewers of V3?
- Where are the annual report and audited accounts of itSMFI?
- Given that TSO is now a private operation owned by German banks, what is their contribution to the costs of the V3 Launch?
And the internet renders it impossible. I hope my blog will help prove that.
Editor's note: if you are new to the Skeptical Informer, the quirky nature pictures are in support of ITIL Version 3's nature-themed graphic designsFirst of all I want to say congratulations to Sharon Taylor and all the people who have worked so hard to bring ITIL Version 3 to fruition. The task is by no means over, with the online offerings, the translation, the certification, the party in Sao Paulo, and all the complementary guidance still to be sorted out, but this is clearly a huge milestone achieved.
These are the IT Skeptic's picks from the comments of May 2007. We had a troll, several authors commented, including David Wheeldon (the others chose to remain anonymous but I can deduce a lot from IP addresses), someone called me a monkey, and I had to take a couple of posts down as libelous or personal attack. Fun month.
I've selected a lot of comments again this month. There is so much good stuff I hate to cut it. I don't agree with it all but it is all good food for thought. Please let me know if it is too much.
Isn't this argument really Visitor (not verified) |
Isn't this argument really irrelevant? How many people who got an MBA during the 80's or 90's are going back to get a new one? ...By this logic since there are such significant changes to the ITIL books that someone who has a year old certification should requalify then surely my doctor who graduated in 1982 should go back and renew her medical degree because that industry has changed sigificantly too? ...
this is NOT the same as a car dealer selling off the '06 models skeptic |
IT is changing at a much faster rate than any other technology or science right now. if your doctor got his degree when leeching was the prefered treatment, then yes just maybe he should re-qualify... This is NOT the same as a car dealer selling off the '06 models because the '07 models are about to be released. V3 is not a matter of a few chrome strips or even a slightly larger engine. We are switching from petrol to hybrid hydrogen, the body is all fibreglass, it seats 7 instead of 4, there are 16 more airbags, and the '06 models will not meet the new safety or emission standards but the '07s do. Should the dealer tell me that before selling me an '06 model?
Angus So whose money did you Visitor (not verified) |
So whose money did you spend to attend the class? Are you really expecting me to believe that you trust an instructor trained on V1, teaching you on V2 that your credential will be have the same value as a V3 version? You must be nuts! ... Get your money back or demand a free V3 'bridge'. ITIL Service Manager credentials are now worthless...
"Credentials now worthless"? Angus |
That's quite a panicked tone you have there, Visitor... My primary instructor has more depth of experience because of his previous training, not in spite of it...
We will survive this, but we may end up looking like idiots skeptic|
...since we are supposed to be the gurus of process, I think allowing our own internal process to be "full speed ahead and damn the torpedoes" is less than satisfactory and does not reflect well on the industry. We will indeed survive this, but we may end up looking like idiots.
itSMF-USA might do something kingmail53 (not verified) |
itSMF seems totally under the thumb of the s l o w - moving Brits... itSMF USA, where the bulk of the money comes from, might see fit to represent their members. Otherwise, what, precisely, is their purpose? Why would the USA support a British standard?
the itSMF's function is NOT to represent its members skeptic |
USA is about the only country in the world still supporting the British standard of imperial measurement so why not one more? ... It is that not-invented-here mentality that left USA behind in the ITIL stakes for a decade. A fair amount of useful invention actually happens in the remaining two-thirds of the world's economy...As for the itSMF's function it is NOT, repeat NOT, to represent its members - and never has been...
ITIL V3 Training Visitor (not verified) |
The first pilot ITIL V3 course has already taken place - you might want to show a photograph of the HP course held this week [Wed, 2007-05-02] in Palo Alto?... I enjoy some of your rants, and at my advanced age it is difficult not to be sceptical either, but the odd fact now and again might be refreshing? David Wheeldon
the parties most deficient in facts are the OGC, APMG and itSMF skeptic |
I agree there are excellent reasons why people might choose V2 training: I simply want that to be an informed choice. There is information to indicate that this is not happening. The cause of that is a failure of governance by the above parties. I think they are most deficient in facts: the OGC, APMG and the itSMF. Yesterday's APMG news release was a month old and nowhere did it mention pilot courses, so please don't accuse me of being deficient in facts...
Some Customers decide to stick with ITIL v2 Peter Lijnse |
...I have customers that ...want their staff trained in V2, because that is what the rest of the organization knows (common language). If it ain't broke don't fix it.... BUT have you tried to order the ITIL V2 books lately: out of stock, backorder, etc... so my guess is it is not only the training issue, but also how long will the V2 books be available... I do not need the V2 books at this moment - I will check on ebay after V3 is actually published :-)
looking forward to the tool blitzkrieg.. MySvcMon |
I think the pending 'V3 compatible' tool blitzkrieg ...will be much more interesting, fun and may cost folks a lot more than training dollars...
I agree to disagree janvo |
...the obvious conclusion is not always followed by the obvious action...
Does it really matter?Peter Lijnse |
...too many people just try to drill holes with a hammer ...
The real point...Visitor |
...I had thought the days of IT for IT's sake had passed, those halcion days where IT people would tell the business what they wanted ...
ITSKEPTIC AS A MONKEYAbout Time (not verified) |
How appropriate that this mal-adjusted and inappropriate event was cancelled. With self proclaimed ITIL "profits" and "Phophets of Doom" on the agenda the event is well deserved at the bottom of the ocean - RIP! May the Boston conference and all those who planned to sail never surface again.
Some people don't take criticism well, do they?skeptic |
Interesting that this originated from a roaming IP address in...Gives me a pretty good idea who is calling me a monkey. If I ever descend to this kind of childishness, I hope you good readers will call me on it.
The debate the country needs but didn't getAlan Nance (not verified) |
...The real issue is that ITIL V3 forces people to think even while most people unfortunately want to sheep their way though service management...As people are overwhelmed by the spin on V3 which is intended to create an atmosphere of inevitability, it is critical that people get information that reflects critical thinking that they may not have the time or the access to themselves. As an example how many people know that there are two very different V3 Foundations sylabii? How may people know that a vey significant % of the ITIL Advisory Group are very critical of the finished product. The differences in opinion is not about ego but substance and I think the Boston BiTA event was a real effort to have a balanced discussion...I still hope that I get a chance to meet the Skpetic one day - with or without a burkha ...
Debating ITIL - "Religious Dissent"?Ian Clayton (not verified) |
The opportunities for some of the power hitters to get together and debate service management as part of a 'state of the union' session are rare indeed - we did not even get that for the ITIL V3 refresh! One ideal forum would be the itSMF event - for some reason it just does not happen...
closed minds and the inability to accept debateskeptic |
Tiptoeing through the minefield of American political correctness, I prefer the term "cult" to "religion" (see "ITIL the Cult"), but I agree that closed minds and the inability to accept debate or criticism does tend to infer a non-rational adherence to a faith. On the other hand, in some instances it may stem more from simple arrogance and/or personal insecurity: people take it not as an affront to their beliefs but as an affront to themselves personally. I work hard to ensure this blog does not get personal and I have nothing personal against anyone ... with the possible exception of the one who called me a monkey ;-D
1-Day ITIL V2 to V3 Bridge - Another MYTH! Visitor (not verified) |
Evidently the five V3 books have about 2000 pages between them - given that some are repeated (common intro and glossary) that still leaves about double what is in the core of V2. Add to that a completely new set of subject matter (Strategy and CSIP) and this makes some comments about "1 day bridge and 20 question quiz" laughable. It also make the stated V3 Foundation exam spec of 40 questions extremely unlikely to test the full content as required by BLOOMS TAXONOMY.
Yes, it is hard to imagineskeptic |
Yes, it is hard to imagine how more than a dozen new processes and functions, and the entirely new dimension/concept of lifecycle, can be covered in a day...
We already have service strategistsCharles T. Betz |
We already have service strategists. They are called capability leads, senior IT architects and IT program managers. Their track record may be a bit spotty, but they are the ones who have been in the trenches actually doing this. Not the operations oriented folks typically attracted to ITIL. I really don't see these folks shelling out for the v3 training to be accredited "Service Strategists" when ITIL has no basis or credibility in this area... Given this history, ITIL v3 will have a long row to hoe in demonstrating much relevance in the front end of the IT demand cycle or truly driving "business/IT alignment." ...
[This launched a huge debate between Charles and dool, which I eventually closed when dool got a bit heated! It is a fascinating discussion but much too extensive to even summarise here, but I must include this one...]
Nice pointdool |
As the philosopher once commented on rock bands, "...as long as they are fighting about the music and not the money..."
User's thinking Visitor (not verified) |
...itSMF purpose is to suppress opposition and support the "cult" - not to represent the membership (per your earlier point). Besides, the cult "leaders" or church "clergy" are the Vendors - and, they use their considerable persuasive power to suppress discussion because it is very much in their interest...
Good Round Table Discussion Visitor (not verified) |
...If people and companies really want to sink their teeth into something look at, ISO, COBIT, etc… These standards have certifications that really mean something.
...Given that ITIL consultants cost even more than my plumber - something I thought I would never see - it is no wonder that people are a bit stingey on getting the expertise they need to adopt and adapt, so they tend to go for "out-of-the-packet": not quite out-of-the-box, they know they have to do some work, but they think it is just add water and stir...
level playing field?skeptic |
...it will be interesting to see how well the concept of "Chinese walls" has been applied or enforced. One ATO announced on this blog that they had already developed and piloted their initial (I assume Foundation) V3 training by the 1st of May (a couple of weeks after OGC released the materials) whereas another ATO is rumoured to have only received their V3 materials on 14th of this month. And I know of one IAG member from a [software] vendor organisation [not an ATO] who has read all five books [by early March].
Cage the gorillas...MySvcMon |
Personally I like vendors. They have lots of money and take you out to lunch. It is natural for big vendors with lots of money to grab the lion's share of the dialog and that is not always a bad thing... they do know what they're doing! ... I have no problem with vendor participation in the ITSM/ITIL dialog, but governance IS needed if only to ensure we don't ALL get eaten alive...
The VendorsAlan Nance (not verified) |
...Vendors have always been a critical part of the ITIL movement... Vendors have a legitimate right to be involved in the development of ITIL. After all the big four: IBM, HP, CA, BMC have spent billions on developing or buying products aligned with ITIL best practices. Much more money than OGC, APMG, EXIN or itSMF has spent on developing the best practice. In fact OGC has invested almost nothing for years and is considered by some as barely credible in their role as the "defender of the faith/cult."...the authors contributing to the books, with the exception of perhaps the Pink chaps, only marginally represent the companies they work for. These authors are for the most part members of the established clique that has dominated ITIL for years... As such their sense of self would probably have driven them to be authors even if they hadn't worked for a vendor. In fact I have heard that many of the current generation of most experienced people who actually work for some of these vendors weren't even consulted about the content written by their colleagues, which kinds of proves my point...
Wow. This thread has descended into a forum of high-school girls where one group gossips and snipes at the group they don't like. "In fact, I heard..." should never end with "...proves my point." (Very catty.) A reasonable google check shows that 50% of the authoring team members have no prior involvement with the "old ITIL culture." (Gossip should hold up to minimal fact checking.) HP, FoxIT, Accenture, and Carnegie-Mellon let their boys run off the reservation? Yeah, must have happened during the lunch-break. "Vendors have a right.." Please, the only thing vendors have a right to is, well, to be vendors (and take me to lunch). If IBM spent billions building products on ISO/IEC 20000 or CobIT, do they have a right to be involved in that development? Dell spends billions on products for Windoze. Where is their outrage for missing the Vista development sessions?...Skeptic - This used to be a classy place, what happened? The world already has a MySpace.
Thank-you Dool. Every-oneskeptic|
Thank-you Dool. Every-one gets their say so long as it is not actually defamatory (or personal - I'll edit personal). I find Alan's post interesting and your response salient - let the readers judge. This blog is about open debate. (but I do think "pass their use-by date" is a cheap shot without evidence)...I strongly disagree with any policy that says vendors are subhuman. First I think it is arbitrary to define a vendor, therefore it is discriminatory to do so. Second I think it is insulting to the decent vendors out there to suggest that they are incapable of conducting themselves like civilised human beings... I'm not sure this was ever a "classy place" but I aint gonna edit no posts just cos they aint got class.
Gossip vs. PerceptionITILLiz |
...wouldn't it be cool, though, if the authors just had their names written, and not their companies?... [What a great idea! Credit the individual author and not mention their employer. Sadly Google renders the idea ineffective...]
Best Practice is hard to copyPeter Lijnse |
...When ITIL V3 is written with the intention to have one best practice I feel we are on the wrong path. Let's be creative and describe different possibilities, it becomes less "religion" and more useful practice(s)... Be creative and be open to different opinions. we might learn something.
The Differences Are HugeITSMER (not verified) |
Some people are in for a bit of a shock come May 30th. The differences between v2 and v3 are not superficial, they are huge...
V2 V3 Differences are immenseIan Clayton, ITSMI (not verified) |
...moving from a silo-based, process improvement strategy to service lifecycle is a dramatic shift in every way, implementation strategy, tools, training, organizational culture....
this will serve to mitigate the increase in scaleskeptic |
...Even though OGC are trying to make V3 more integral than V2, it is a good bet that users will concentrate on the Service Transition and Service Operations books, in the same way as we focus on the red and blue books in V2, so that V3 will have its own "lost processes", as I call them. If true, this will serve to mitigate the increase in scale considerably.
CMDB in the real worldcotswolddave |
I attended a conference a few days ago where I saw a competitor ( yep i'm a vendor) stand up and preach the latest buzz words about CMDB federation/reconcilation/yawn. Last year it would have been lapped up as the voice of innovation from a market leader. This year the audience bombarded the luckless presenter with good reasons why his concept was flawed (maybe they read itskeptic!) and he left the stage in shame... people have started to look in more detail as they are actually wanting the benefits promised by the CMDB concept...
You guys have all been fooledITIL Master |
Hay Skeptic, may your clouds be long and white and your sheep bleeting... the general IT community has been fooled by the vendors and industry analysts about the CMDB... they have led everyone to believe it is all about a peice of technology. In no other part of ITIL has the race to provide a peice of technology been so bitterly fought by the vendors and ably supported by the analysts. It is not about the technology it is about the process and most organisations just focus on the technology, blindly discovering CI's and federating data sources until they have stuck every bit of possible information in a big stinking database and then the wonder what they should do with it...
SCEPTICISM ABOUNDS AND RIGHTLY SO!Visitor (not verified)|
...V3 has clearly been developed to line the pockets of a few and create 'legend' status for mere mortals, many of whom have not used Service Management in anger for a very, very long time...There is a lot of froth being blown around at the moment and fundamentally I doubt whether there is a CEO in the world that has lost a minutes sleep to date. V3 will not change the shape or dynamics of any organisation in the world (less cash strapped ATO's - and there a a number of those around!)...
vendors, pontificators and other hangers-onskeptic |
...the ITIL authors should be people who are good at gathering the IP from the field and communicating it, which is not the same thing as many of the good ITIL practitioners I have met...
FAIR COMMENTVisitor (not verified) |
...With known exceptions, most of the team have one aspiration in mind and that is to enhance their own perceived standing in the ITIL 'community'. For some, ITIL is a tool that can be used to enhance the quality of service, for others it is a business class, round the world junket!!! Now there is scepticism for you!!!
Nice work if you can get itskeptic |
...In a way, that's not so bad: if V3 tanks, then all their authoring is for naught, so you could argue they have more at stake than a starry-eyed author who just wants to act for the good of humanity. More damage has been done with the best of intentions... Now there is cynicism for you!
ITIL 3: The 7 step process modelITIL Skeptic's Little Brother (not verified) |
...The missing ITIL Book? (People, People, People: A guide to why people and ITIL matters to the successful implementation and improvement of Processes?)...
And your suprised because?ITIL Skeptic's Little Brother (not verified) |
...The OGC are directly responsible, they spend 3 years writing and 3 weeks trying to implement: Ever heard of Service Introduction chaps!!!!
I wouldn't want to spoil the big day.skeptic |
What? You were expecting something particularly juicy and ugly for today? [ITIL V3 published] I wouldn't want to spoil the big day. [itSMF USA did that for me] Actually today is something of a non-event. The NDA gags come off, so people will be spilling the beans on blogs and forums. The REAL launch is a week away in London. And the books won't magically appear in a stocking on the foot of your bed overnight...
This article has been podcast.
This recent comment on this blog "the OGC could have done a better job of communicating during the process" comes from someone - if it is who I'm pretty sure it is - who is well placed in the ITIL "elite". That is my #1 point in all my ITIL V3 postings.
All this British public service "you'll know when we decide it is time to tell you" stuff is not how new versions of all standards/frameworks are developed, and I don't think it is best practice.
If you are a visual person like me you may find a diagram helpful in understanding just what ITIL Version 3 means, what has changed. The diagram has been moved to here (it's still free!).
People are starting to realise how different ITIL Version 3 ("The Refresh") is from ITIL Version 2, and how much more extensive the scope and ideas are. It is all good, but are the public prepared for it?
The little spot of bother at the itSMF USA is in the public domain now. The good news is that the Board acknowledge there might be an issue here and it bears looking into. The bad news is they chose ITIL's big party day to do so.
The IT Skeptic is now collecting everything I can find out about ITIL Version 3 on one reference page. It will apppear on the RSS feed whenever it is updated, or else if you register you can subscribe to notifications at the bottom of the reference page ("subscribe post").
For example, here is what we know about Certification:
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