Subject: Re: small worlds and better than ransom
From: "Stephen J. Turnbull" <>
Date: Tue, 09 Oct 2007 03:39:30 +0900

simo writes:

 > I have seen this in my previous job, and it was the thing I didn't like.
 > People were more concerned at checking what the adversary was doing and
 > catching up with any stupid feature even if it didn't make sense at all,
 > than actually thinking on how to improve substantially their product.

If you're describing internal competition, this is a management
problem, not a problem with competition per se.  That is, management
should be making it clear that copying features gets you no points.
He might even arrange that features that are copied increase the
points of the *originator*, or can only be "purchased" at the cost of
some of your own points.  This would provide proper incentive to
include only those features that support *your* innovations and
overall usability.

A similar result could be achieved with external competition, but that
requires even more engagement on the part of the manager/referee.

The net result is probably as you say: unless you've got a really good
manager, you should have only a little competition.