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About VRM

VRM, or Vendor Relationship Management, is the reciprocal of CRM or Customer Relationship Management. It provides customers with tools for engaging with vendors in ways that work for both parties.

CRM systems until now have borne the full burden of relating with customers. VRM will provide customers with the means to bear some of that weight, and to help make markets work for both vendors and customers — in ways that don't require the former to "lock in" the latter.

The goal of VRM is to improve the relationship between Demand and Supply by improving the means by which the former can relate to the latter. It is to improve markets and their mechanisms by best equipping customers to play the role of independent leaders and not just captive followers in their relationships with vendors and other parties on the supply side of the marketplace.

For VRM to work, vendors must have reasons to value — rather than to fear — customer independence. Providing those reasons is the primary challenge for VRM.

Project VRM

Project VRM is a community-driven effort to support the creation and building of VRM tools. It grew out of the user-centric identity community (of which it is still a part) toward supporting higher degrees of customer independence from vendor control. It is hosted by the Berkman Center for Internet and Society at Harvard University and headed by Doc Searls, a fellow with the Center.

In addition to this wiki, ProjectVRM has a blog and a mailing list. Work is currently underway to create a static home site, so this wiki can serve more as a work space.

Note: the shortest link to this page is

Read more about ProjectVRM on the About Page.


Next VRM Conference Call: Wednesday March 21 at 10:30 AM Pacific / 1:30 PM Eastern

Please note: change from Thursday to Wednesday.

A group e-mail reminder will go out next week and also one day before the call. Dial-in number and bridge code will be in the e-mail.

As usual we are going to record the call for potential future use as a reference audio or podcast. The MP3s of the two prior calls can be found on the Community Portal page of the Project VRM wiki.

Do you have an agenda item for the call? Please send it to the group (or to me (DeanLand), if you're feeling shy).

Conference Call archive and audio links have been moved to the Community Portal page.