Philosophy of minimal disturbance of existing users

John Crisp jcrisp at
Wed Sep 19 11:15:05 UTC 2012

On 19/09/12 04:08, Blake Winton wrote:
> On 18-09-12 17:53 , John Crisp wrote:

>> And there lies my argument 'for their own good'. Says who ?

> Says the community members developing and leading Thunderbird, I would
> think.  Who else would be in a position to make such a decision?

Obviously. Someone has too.

I just feel that sometimes decisions are made about 'improvements'
without really knowing what the customers feel. Yes, they can do so via
the bug tracker or forums or here, but most have no idea about such
things and just 'go with the flow', however much they may dislike
something. Just because they upgraded doesn't mean to say they like it.

ESR says something about how popular change can be.

Maybe that's an idea to try on the TB download page and on the updater.
See what people choose when they download or upgrade.  An informed and
balanced choice. Stable or new features. At the minute there is no real
choice unless you really know what you are looking for.

>> It has become more 'fluff' and less reliable and hence why we have been
>> looking at other, simpler, products.  I am sure that we are not alone.

> How do you square this with the fact that Thunderbird's user base has
> been growing as the developers have been adding features?  If
> Thunderbird loses 100,000 users, but gains 1,000,000, would you consider
> that a good trade-off, even if you were one of the users it loses?

Statistics :-) Can you say that it's 100% because of the new features,
or that it is due to other factors - e.g. it has become much more
difficult to make/use pirated copies of other paid for offerings so
people have looked for alternatives ??

If it is completely due to new features then I agree you go with the

In my own experience, since the advent of pre installed Office and
people having to pay (and having lost their copied versions of Office 97
and 2000 !!!!!), there has been an increasing shift towards more Open
Source products and I am sure TB and other OS offerings have benefited
from this.

I am sure there are many other factors as well.

B. Rgds

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