CompTIA, a 32-year-old tech industry group best known for its IT certifications, is broadening access to it resources by making them free.
It's created a new category, registered users, which means that if you register with the site, it will make available, without charge, its vendor neutral research and educational materials, and its tools, such as instruction on how to start a tech business.
The site had previously restricted this information to its corporate members, which number about 2,000.
"This is not a play for more members or revenue, it's honestly about driving engagement," said Nancy Hammervik, senior vice president for industry relations at CompTIA.
Hammervik said the organization generates its revenue from the certification programs, and it will continue to charge for that.
It's opening its research to all as part of an effort to become more progressive and relevant with an audience that can get information about industry issues in a number of places, she said.
Another motivation is to help drive workforce development, which is part of CompTIA's mission, said Hammervik.
The organization also has paid membership programs that offer networking opportunities and discounts.
Until today's announcement, the industry group has been making the registered user option quietly available widely and so far about 5,000 have signed up.
Patrick Thibodeau covers cloud computing and enterprise applications, outsourcing, government IT policies, data centers and IT workforce issues for Computerworld. Follow Patrick on Twitter at @DCgov or subscribe to Patrick's RSS feed. His e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org.
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