Hi folks - we'd like to try a little product feedback experiment.

 

Here's some of the problems we're seeing with Channel 9's current popularity:

 

  • We're still working on ways to scale the number of Microsoft employees answering questions to keep up with the demand.
  • We're already seeing repeated questions on the forums, and we'd like to avoid the old usenet chestnut of "do a search" (especially since there's no search engine just yet!)
  • We're seeing a lot of product suggestions, but all jumbled up with other stuff.

 

So in the shower yesterday I came up with the idea of using the Channel 9 wiki as a collective archive of knowledge and feedback from these forums. I've started a ProductFeedback page on the wiki, and three product-specific pages hanging off it: InternetExplorerFeedback, VisualStudioFeedback, and DotNetFeedback. Yes, these pages are for YOU to add stuff to. I've already pre-populated them with snippets of posts from the forums. Here's what I'm hoping:

 

  • The wiki pages will serve as FOFs for the products - Frequently Offered Feedback Smiley
  • We harness you, the Channel9 users, to decide amongst yourselves how you want to rank the importance of your own feedback. Cast votes? Estimate percentage of users affected? Who knows - let's start discussing it here.
  • Anyone can respond to repeating forum threads with a simple pointer to the appropriate FOF. Imagine which reply a new Channel9 poster would rather read:
    • “Here’s what Channel9 has already put together about that: InternetExplorerFeedback. If that covers your point, go ahead and add your vote to the page, otherwise let’s talk about how to expand the wiki entry.”
    • “That’s already come up before.  Do a search.”
  • Our harried devs get ONE location to pay attention to (and maybe contribute reasons and explanations to?), instead of having to watching every forum thread. If the FOFs include back-pointers to the original forum threads and contributors that started them, our devs will also know where to go to ask clarifying questions.

 

Cool? Crazy? Boring?  Fire away.


Oh, and some Wiki etiquette:

 

  • If you haven't already read OneMinuteWiki and VisitorWelcome, do so now.
  • If you want to find out how wiki editing works, start on the PlayPage before graduating to "real" pages.
  • Wikis depend on people mostly adding and refactoring information, not deleting it - remember, no-one likes mean people.
  • It's nice to sign your own contributions.