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Re: Bugs and Responsibilities

That all sounds very reasonable to me.  Hence I don't understand the tone
of the reply you got.  Somehow I just have to get it through my thick head
that in the late 1990s there is no relationship between customer
satisfaction and corporate profit.

On the other hand I've got some sympathy for tech support
people/departments.  If all of the people calling were as knowledgable
about Frame as Dan, they would have few false alarms.  But they get calls
about the most trifiling things.  I've got a friend who I help out with
computer things all the time because she's just too busy, distracted, lazy
(pick an adjective) to use the manuals (but she's not stupid).  She learned
Word Perfect by trial and error and calling the Help line a few times a day
(it was free in those days).  That's the kind of behaviour that shuts those
services down.  If I was a tech support person it would drive me nuts.

But that said, it seems that there needs to be a way to send and receive
bug reports through e-mail or a web site.  That helps everyone.

- web

At 11:41 AM -0700 13/10/98, Dan Emory wrote:
>For the record, this is the message I sent to Trish Mudgett of Adobe on
>9/11/98 regarding her announcement of the shut-down of comments@adobe.com.
>You will note that the 4th paragraph below begins with the sentence she took
>out of context in her reply to me, in which she stated: "Exactly! Discussion
>Closed," and ignored the rest of my discussion.
>Your explanation of why comments@adobe.com was shut down ignores an
>important category of information received from users that is vitally needed
>by Adobe, namely, bug reports. The only type of bug mentioned in your post
>on the subject is crash bugs. That doesn't even begin to cover the territory.
>Adobe has an urgent need to learn about bugs from users, and has an
>obligation to respond appropriately to valid reports, regardless of whether
>the sender has a support subscription. Users have an urgent need to know
>whether the problem they're experiencing is caused by a known bug, and
>whether there is a workaround if it is a bug.
>My experience is that its almost always necessary to describe a bug's
>symptoms in writing, and, if the report has validity, to correspond back and
>forth about it via email.
>Probably 80% of bug reports aren't really bugs; instead, the reporter is
>doing something wrong, or is describing a feature that's not in the product.
>But if user's without support descriptions can't contact Adobe to report a
>bug, they will assume it is a bug, and defame the product by telling
>everyone about it.
>How do you expect to discover and fix bugs without a free flow of
>information from the users?
>All of the known bugs (and recommended workarounds, if any) should appear in
>a list on an Adobe website. No such complete list is currently available on
>Adobe's website, or, if it is, no-one knows about it. Such a buglist should
>allow users to download it, thus taking a large load off tech support. If a
>user is experiencing a problem he/she thinks is a bug, and doesn't find a
>description of it in the buglist, there should be an e-mail address
>(bugs@adobe.com?) where the bug report can be sent. You could set up an
>initial autoresponse to such emails, declaring that, if no further reply is
>received within a week, the report is invalid, and no further correspondence
>from Adobe will ensue. Again, this would take the load off tech support,
>allowing them to focus on valid trouble reports.
>Dan Emory

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