March 31st, 2019


Negative feedback for your project

HN discusses how hard it is to deal with negative feedback as a Free Software Maintainer

These maintainers' complaints seem strange to me.

I am running a free job posting website.
Every day I receive about a hundred emails with various requests, questions and complaints (from recruiters, job seekers and operators of other job boards).

Some of these emails are negative or even outright rude.
But that negativity does not really bother me. I evaluate level of "Negativity" in the email to understand the nature of the request better (Is the request realistic? Is the request fair? Could our team realistically prevent that negativity in the first place?)

Requests like: “How dare you not (use your free time to) fix this ultra high priority bug that is affecting me?” -- I do not even consider negative. In fact, that is a positive comment to me, because it may indicate an opportunity (to make our job board better or to even add another revenue stream).

The complainer in such case already did some of the work for our job board: identified potential problem, described how to reproduce it, defined the use case explaining why fixing that problem is important.

If that is not helpful feedback, then what kind of feedback is more useful?

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