Libre Marketing

Marketing and creative professionals are increasingly looking to Free/Libre/Open Source tools to get the job done. This has come up enough in conversations that I decided to write a single page with my perspective on the why, how, and what.

Why Choose Libre Marketing?

Libre Marketing takes the philosophy of respecting user freedom and applies it to marketing tools, processes, and content. Why do this?

  • Freedom: Prioritize freedom and privacy for yourself and your stakeholders.
  • Community: Join a friendly, solutions-oriented peer group with shared values.
  • Control: Own your workflow, without planned obsolescence or forced upgrades.
  • Cost: Many tools are also free as a matter of price, saving you money.

Why are you interested in Libre Marketing? Let me know!

How Does Libre Marketing Work?

It starts with licensing. Each project selects license(s) their work is shared under. Licenses that respect user freedom inspire confidence in users and contributors, and are at the heart of massively successful projects like Wikipedia and the Linux kernel.

Once a license has been selected and communicated, begin identifying and solving user needs. In Libre Marketing, this means using tools and processes shared under freedom-respecting licenses, then freely licensing the content.

What Tools Are Right for You?

Below is a (growing) list of tools, categorized by the relevant functional area of marketing.  Beneath each area is a list of tools with a link to their main website, followed by a short description.

Analytics and Data

  • Data Visualization
    • Dashbuilder: A full featured web application to easily create dashboards from heterogeneous sources.
    • freeboard: Internet of Things (IoT) device dashboard software.
    • Grafana: Tool for querying and visualizing time series and metrics.
    • Mozaïk: Scalable, extendable, responsive Node.js-based dashboard software.
    • Seaborn: Python visualization library for statistical data, based on matplotlib.
    • Stashboard: Status dashboard for APIs and software services.
  • Elastic Stack: Suite of analytics and search software.
    • Beats: Platform for single-purpose data shippers
    • Logstash: Server-side data processing pipeline that ingests data from a multitude of sources simultaneously.
    • Elasticsearch: A distributed, RESTful search and analytics engine
    • Kibana: Visualization tool for the Elastic Stack.
  • LimeSurvey: Web-based survey tool.
  • MySQL: Relational database management system.
  • Pentaho: Software suite of business intelligence products
  • Phant: Internet of Things (IoT) data logging service.
  • Piwik: Robust website analytics platform.
  • PostgreSQL: Object-relational database management system.
  • R Software Environment: Statistical computing and graphics.

Animation and Drawing

  • MyPaint: Raster graphics editor for digital painters.
  • Pencil2D: Animation software for bitmap and vector graphics.
  • Synfig Studio: Vector-based 2D animation software.
  • Tupi: 2D animation software.

Audio Editing

  • Ardour: Hard disk recorder and digital audio workstation software.
  • Audacity: Audio software for multi-track recording and editing.

Audio/Video Equipment

  • Apertus: Production-grade digital cinematic motion picture technology.



  • phpList: Mailing list and email marketing software.
  • roundcube: Browser-based multilingual IMAP client with an application-like user interface.
  • Thunderbird: Easy desktop email application software.

Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP)

  • CiviCRM: ERP for not-for-profit organizations.
  • ERPNext: Simple, cloud-based ERP platform.
  • metasfresh: Feature-rich ERP platform.
  • Odoo: Suite of enterprise management applications.
  • Free administration software for non-profits.

File Conversion and Manipulation

  • ffmpeg:  A complete, cross-platform solution to record, convert and stream audio and video.
  • LibreOffice: Command line functionality to convert one or more files.
  • LosslessCut: Simple, cross platform video editor for lossless trimming and cutting of videos.
  • Pandoc: A universal document converter compatible with many file formats.
  • PDFtk: Toolkit with a variety of functions for manipulating PDF documents.
  • QPDF: Toolkit with a variety of functions for manipulating PDF documents.
  • unoconv: Universal converter for any document format supported by LibreOffice/OpenOffice.
  • Xpdf: PDF viewer that includes PDF-to-text functionality.


  • * rEFInd Boot Manager: Boot manager for EFI- and UEFI-based computers. *
  • * UNetbootin: Software to create bootable live USB drives for GNU/Linux. *
  • CentOS: Stable, predictable, manageable and reproducible platform derived from the sources of Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL).
  • Debian: Free operating system (OS) for your computer.
  • Elementary OS: Fast and open replacement for Windows and Mac OS X.
  • Fedora: Linux-based operating system that provides users with access to the latest free and open source software, in a stable, secure and easy to manage form.
  • Ubuntu: Open source software platform that runs from the cloud, to the smartphone, to all your things
    • Ubuntu Studio: Version of Ubuntu with special emphasis on creative work flows.

Graphic Design

  • gpick: Advanced color picker and palette editing tool.
  • Inkscape: Vector graphics editing software.
  • Krita: Sketching and painting software.
  • Scribus: Desktop publishing software.


  • Channels:
    • #opensourcedesign
  • Freenode: An IRC network used to discuss peer-directed projects.
  • IRC: Application layer protocol for text-based communication, with chat enabled by a client/server networking model.


  • * Markdown: Official project documentation *
  • Abricotine: Distraction-free interface with GitHub Flavored Markdown (GFM) support.
  • Elegant Markdown Editor: Focused markdown editor.
  • embedmd: Embed files or fractions of files into markdown files.
  • ghostwriter: Distraction-free markdown editor.
  • LightMd Markdown Editor: Lightweight markdown editor.
  • MarkMyWords: Minimal markdown editor.
  • odpdown: Generate ODP files from markdown.
  • PileMd: Markdown editor with notes and local syncing.
  • Remarkable: Fully featured, robust markdown editor with GitHub Flavored Markdown (GFM) support.
  • ReText: Simple but powerful markdown editor.
  • UberWriter: Simple, feature-rich markdown editor.

Mobile and Phone

  • Asterisk: Framework for building communications applications.
  • F-Droid: Repository of applications for the Android platform.
  • OmniRom: Operating system for smartphones and tablet computers.
  • Ring: Distributed multi-media communication software.

Office Suite


Photo Editing and Viewing

  • Enblend/Enfuse: Seamless image and exposure blending. [Check out MacroFusion GUI interface for Enfuse]
  • Fotoxx: Application for image editing and collection management.
  • GNU Image Manipulation Program: Image and photo editing software.
  • G’MIC: Full-featured framework for image processing with multiple user interfaces.
  • Geeqie: Lightweight image viewer software.
  • Ghiro: Automated, web-based digital image forensics tool. [Try it online here at]
  • GraphicsMagick: Collection of tools and libraries supporting reading, writing, and manipulating image files in over 88 formats.
  • Hugin: Cross-platform panoramic imaging tool chain.
  • HDRMerge: Application that fuses two or more raw images into a single raw with an extended dynamic range with exposure merging and tone mapping.
  • ImageJ: Image processing and analysis in Java.
  • ImageMagick: Software for displaying, converting, and editing raster and vector image files.
  • LuminanceHDR: Graphical user interface that provides a complete workflow for HDR imaging.
  • Raw Processing
    • darktable: Photography workflow application and raw developer.
    • filmulator: Film emulator for raw files from cameras that stimulates development of film mimicking light from the camera sensor.
    • LightZone: Professional-level digital darkroom and photo editor with RAW processing and editing.
    • photivo: Photo processor for RAW and bitmap files in a non-destructive 16 bit processing pipeline.
    • Photoflow: A fully non-destructive photo retouching program providing a complete RAW image editing workflow.
    • RawTherapee: Powerful, cross-platform raw photo processing program.
    • UFRaw: Utility to read and manipulate raw images from digital cameras
  • Siril: Semi-automated processing tool for astronomical images.
  • VIPS: Fast, low memory usage image processing system.
  • Web Galleries:
    • coppermine gallery: Multi-purpose, fully-featured, and integrated web picture gallery script.
    • fgallery: Minimalist static photo gallery generator.
    • Pannellum: Lightweight, plug-in free panorama viewer for the web.
    • ResourceSpace: Simple and fast digital asset management software.
    • * Gallery: Web-based photo management for your own website. Inactive/No longer maintained. *

Project Management

  • Booked Scheduler: Simple reserve-anything scheduler for labs, rooms, events, and more.
  • Habitica: Gamified productivity software.
  • OpenProject: Project management software.
  • Taiga: Project management platform for agile developers and designers and project managers.

Social Media

  • GNU Social: Federated social communication software for public and private communication.
  • Mastodon: An alternative, implementation of the federated social communication software GNU Social.
  • Rainbowstream: Beautiful command line Twitter client
  • Twidge: Simple command line Twitter client.

Stock Content


  • documentation.js: Beautiful documentation generator.
  • Fountain: Plain text markup language for screenwriting and screenplays.
  • LaTeX: Document preparation system for typesetting.
  • Plume Creator: Software for writers and novelists.
  • Read the Docs: Documentation framework and hosting service.
  • ‘afterwriting: A client-side node.js web application for screenwriting with local/offline functionality.

Text Editors

  • Gedit: Text editor for GNU/Linux, Mac OS X, and Windows.
  • Notepad++: Text editor for Windows.
  • TextMate: Text editor for Mac OS X.

Typeface, Typography and Fonts

Video Editing

  • Blender: Complete 3D creation software suite.
  • Kdenlive: Non-linear video editing software.
  • OpenShot: Simple video editing software.

Web Browser

Web Development

3D Modeling (Desktop)

  • Blender: Complete 3D creation software suite.
  • FreeCAD: Parametric 3D modeling software.
  • OpenSCAD: Script-based desktop for creating 3D models.

3D Modeling (Web/Browser)

3D Models

  • vectiler: A wavefront OBJ vector tile builder and exporter based on mapzen vector tiles.
  • * Thingiverse: 3D model repository. Includes non-Free Content *
  • * Yeggi: 3D model search engine. Includes non-Free Content *
  • * YouMagine: 3D model repository. Includes non-Free Content *


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