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Re: On maintainers not responding to bugs

On Tue, 27 Feb 2007 00:30:23 +0100, Ben Finney wrote:

> Don Armstrong <don@debian.org> writes:
>> Just for reference, what is currently sent is the following[1]:
>>  Thank you for the problem report you have sent regarding Debian.
>> ^- an indication the effort of submitting a bug report is appreciated
>>  This is an automatically generated reply, to let you know your message has
>>  been received.  It is being forwarded to the package maintainers and other
>>  interested parties for their attention; they will reply in due course.
>> ^- an indication the effort will _not_ be ignored in the long run
>>  Your message has been sent to the package maintainer(s):
>>   [...]
> There's a huge difference, though, in the effect on the submitter
> between receiving an automated "your report *will in the future* be
> read by a human being", 

...which most submitters will read as "your report *may* in the
future be read by a human being".

> and receiving a (possibly automated) "a real
> human *has* read your report and has made the following triage
> decision on it".

Automated in this context worries me a little. To have value, the note
absolutely must be initiated by the maintainer him/herself and not some
automated system.

I see the following two possibilities when a bug report goes
un-acknowledged by a human:

Situation 1: Maintainer is absent / doesn't care / didn't notice / etc.
Result 1:    No ack.

Situation 2: Maintainer is present, noticed, cares, etc., but doesn't ack
             bugs as a matter of personal policy.
Result 2:    No ack.

It's difficult/impossible to tell which situation applies without a
non-automatically-initiated acknowledgement that the bug has been seen by
a human.


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