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From "Marcus (OOo)" <marcus.m...@wtnet.de>
Subject Re: User questions on dev mailing list
Date Fri, 06 Sep 2013 17:37:25 GMT
Am 09/06/2013 01:41 PM, schrieb Rob Weir:
> On Fri, Sep 6, 2013 at 3:39 AM, Marcus (OOo)<marcus.mail@wtnet.de>  wrote:
>> Am 09/06/2013 03:24 AM, schrieb Dave Fisher:
>>
>>>
>>> On Sep 5, 2013, at 4:32 PM, Kay Schenk wrote:
>>>
>>>> On Thu, Sep 5, 2013 at 4:11 PM, sebb<sebbaz@gmail.com>   wrote:
>>>>
>>>>> A related issue is: why so many emails with the (irrelevant) subject:
>>>>>
>>>>> "Reporting a problem with the Open Office website"
>>>>>
>>>>
>>>> that's the pre-constructed subject for the  first entry in:
>>>> "If you have technical problems with one of the Apache OpenOffice
>>>> websites.."
>>>>
>>>> this was put in a few weeks ago, so folks using this email section would
>>>> get more of an indication about what the subject they're sending about.
>>>>
>>>> But we are still getting product problem reports this way. I would still
>>>> recommend removing the first reference to contacting the developers,
>>>> however.
>>>>
>>>> If folks really do need an immediate e-mail on this Contact Us page, we
>>>> could easily put in a mailto: to "users@openoffice.apache.org" the way
>>>> we've done with contact the developers. This would go through moderation,
>>>> but at least it would be going to a more appropriate mailing list. Is
>>>> this
>>>> a good idea?
>>>
>>>
>>> Yes - and we should shorten the long suggested "subject" with something
>>> like "[Contact]"
>>
>>
>> I've asked if it's a good idea to extend the subject to see where it comes
>> from and to show the user (hopefully) "Hey, maybe your text doesn't fit to
>> the subject, think again". Nobody objected and I did it.
>>
>> Now it is too long, so I don't understand the objection. Why now?
>>
>> OK, maybe a little revolution but we should remove any hints to the dev@
>> list completely as it obviously doesn't work. Just leave some hints to
>> users@ and the general mailing list webpage.
>>
>
> With a million downloads per week nothing will work perfectly accept
> removing any mention of the dev list from that page.
>
> We played with adjusting the wording on the website, and the ordering
> of things on the page.  That improved things a little, I think.  But
> even a small human error rate multiplied by 65 million will be
> significant.
>
> Maybe we shouldn't have a a subject line at all?  That would force the
> sender to think and write one.  Many email clients force that.   If we
> predefine a subject than many users will just use it unchanged.  This
> is OK in some cases, where the intent is clearly expressed by the
> subject, like "I am starting the Introduction to Contributing to
> Apache OpenOffice" emails.  But it doesn't work well in other cases.

We had no subject line before the change and it was proven not to work. 
And additionally we didn't know where the mails came from.

Now there is a preset subject and - unfortunately - it still doesn't work.

So, going back to not offer a subject line won't change anything to work 
better.

> Another angle is to realize that enabling the user and motivating them
> in a specific direction is more powerful than trying to steer them
> away from a specific direction.  Maybe the problem is we are not
> making the support forums sound attractive enough?  Maybe if we said
> something like, "For the fastest and most expert response, post your
> question to...."?  Make the forums sound like the most attractive
> option.  We know they are the best place for questions, of course.
> But we ought to describe it equally attractively.

Yes, that could maybe work. If someone has ideas to improve the wording 
and to guide the users into the wanted direction, then change, commit 
and wait for the results.

I as non-native speaker think I'm no longer suitable to do these changes.

Marcus



>>>>> I assume there must be a mailto: link somewhere that is producing this.
>>>>> The surrounding text may need to be tweaked to reduce these.
>>>>>
>>>>>
>>>>> On 5 September 2013 22:48, Kay Schenk<kay.schenk@gmail.com>   wrote:
>>>>>>
>>>>>> On Thu, Sep 5, 2013 at 6:29 AM, sebb<sebbaz@gmail.com>   wrote:
>>>>>>
>>>>>>> On 5 September 2013 12:00, Rob Weir<robweir@apache.org>
  wrote:
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>> On Thu, Sep 5, 2013 at 5:24 AM, sebb<sebbaz@gmail.com>
  wrote:
>>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>> The dev list sees the occasional thread which IMO really
belongs on
>>>>>>>>> the user list/forum
>>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>> Although it is convenient for the poster to have the
question
>>>>>
>>>>> answered
>>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>> on the dev list, I wonder if that is the best approach
overall.
>>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>> The disadvantages of not referring the poster to the
user list are
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>> several:
>>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>> - other users don't benefit from the thread
>>>>>>>>> - the dev list is cluttered with the off-topic threads
>>>>>>>>> - the poster may continue to use the dev list rather
than the user
>>>>>>>>> list/forum where there are lots more potential responders
>>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>> Just a thought.
>>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>> This is all true.  We also get user questions to the private
mailing
>>>>>>>> list, and via the press alias address.  And we also get product
>>>>>>>> support questions to the Bugzilla admin alias and the ezmlm
admin
>>>>>>>> alias.
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>> But I don't think we actively encourage users to post questions
to do
>>>>>>>> these things.  But it is a puzzle why this happens.
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>> The main contact page for the project, on the footer of every
web
>>>>>>>> page
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>> is this:
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>> http://www.openoffice.org/contact_us.html
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>> We've adjusted this over time, to make sure that the support
options
>>>>>>>> were first and more prominent.  But we still get misdirected
emails,
>>>>>>>> to the dev, private, etc. lists.  But with a million downloads
a week
>>>>>>>> there will always be some small number of users who don't
read that
>>>>>>>> page carefully, or maybe think they will get a faster response
if
>>>>>>>> they
>>>>>>>> send to a different list.
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>> [And they are proved right when their off-topic questions are
promptly
>>>>>>> answered ...]
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>> The second heading currently says:
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>> "If you want to contact the Apache OpenOffice developer team..."
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>> which may explain some of the misdirected questions.
>>>>>>> [Who better to ask than a developer if there is a problem?
>>>>>>> Maybe I'll get a faster response?]
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>> I think that section should have some explanation as to when
it is
>>>>>>> appropriate to contact the team directly.
>>>>>>> Possibly move it further down the page as well.
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>
>>>>>> Maybe the "contact the Apache OpenOffice developer team" needs to
be
>>>>>> removed from the "Contact Us" page entirely.  Honestly, given the
>>>>>
>>>>> context,
>>>>>>
>>>>>> I'm not sure this belongs here. Maybe delete that section and add
a
>>>>>
>>>>> heading
>>>>>>
>>>>>> at the end called Mailing Lists and route them to the project mailing
>>>>>
>>>>> list
>>>>>>
>>>>>> page. That might encourage users to  make a better choice for
>>>>>> contacting.
>>>>>>
>>>>>>
>>>>>>
>>>>>>
>>>>>>>> -Rob

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