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Re: contacting Debian is too easy to get wrong

On 03/21/2017 09:30 AM, Paul Wise wrote:
> On Tue, Mar 21, 2017 at 3:36 PM, Ritesh Raj Sarraf wrote:
>> Yes. This would be great. An online form, that anyone could use to ask a
>> question would be nice.
> We already have places to ask questions but people don't know how to
> find the right one. The service or web page I proposed would only be
> about finding the right place to ask.

So we admit that we have this places but we just want to pile more
places so people can find thing. Why not just finally sit down, remove
our head from hackerish thinking and say - our landing page (debian.org)
is a disservice to community and we either work on that or don't work on
that - someone needs to research the usability. We are tons of
information, which really is great but if people need to read through
it, and jump around to come to their answer/solution, I fear they will
loose the will before they find what they need. Even things like
changing font, font size, putting things into colored boxes etc etc can
help users to easily see and navigate what are they looking for.

>> Much nicer would be if the user could use this form to ask question about
>> specifics. For example, Tracker could have a new field, "Ask a question".
> I'd rather they use existing services for asking questions, we have a
> lot already and adding more will just dilute the available resources.

But you just proposed adding more things. I propose archiving most of
what we have and create one, easily accessible from landing page, place
where users can direct their questions which offers them a way to choose
appropriate tag. I see this as a addition to bugreport because believe
it or not, most new users (especially non-technical ones) will not use
the bugreport tool (we can accept this or not and rant few more years
how people say that we aren't user friendly but we know better and they
are wrong).

>> For generic questions, assign question to "PR Team".
> Not sure what you mean by PR but if you mean the publicity team, they
> definitely wouldn't be the place to direct generic questions.

Hm, now to even go further with idea archive all except one (or archive
all and create one new) service for users/community and create support team.

>> For specific (package) questions, assign to Individuals/Teams just like bug
>> reports.
> These should go to one of our support channels, package maintainers
> are for maintaining software/packages rather than answering questions.
> https://www.debian.org/support

That is already on our landing page and your subject says "contacting
Debian is too easy to get wrong" but now you say same thing that
probably frustrates users. It is obviously it is there, yet it is even
more obvious it DIDN't help.

>> Essentially, a Question Tracking System, similar to BTS. Launchpad has a nice
>> "Ask Questions" feature.
> We already have ask.debian.net for that.

Which also failed for most. I don't think even all Debian Developers
know for ask.debian.net or all services - how do we expect someone using
Debian for the first time go into all this. Understanding gigantic
project such as Debian is already hard, getting help is intimidating if
they come across us devs saying RTFM, go here and here, etc etc.

>> I don't have much web skills but I'd volunteer to be part of that team and help
>> in whatever way feasible.
> Great!

I would help with the idea of creating support team and helping with
making support part more prominent on our page (but yea, that probably
includes changing the design which I don't even want to start debating
in Debian..).

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