Outreach to end users

Matt Harris unicorn.consulting at gmail.com
Wed Mar 22 10:48:27 UTC 2017

On 3/22/17 11:15 AM, Ben Bucksch wrote:
> Juergen Fenn wrote on 21.03.2017 14:45:
>> I think the most important point in terms of marketing should be to
>> reassure both corporate and end users that Thunderbird still is alive
>> and under active development and that it is worthwhile to deploy it and
>> to build your workflow on TB for the time being.
>> The main page of mozilla.org has not been pointing to Thunderbird for
>> quite a while, and the announcement that Thunderbird would not be
>> supported by Mozilla any more is still very much around, at least in
>> this country. If this cannot be changed there should be a more prominent
>> website or starting page for Thunderbird users.
> Thanks, Jürgen. This is a good point, indeed. I am too close to the 
> project to realize that this is the outside impression. We need to 
> work on this.
> Do you have some suggestions, other than a new website?

Bring the decision about Thunderbird's financial and spiritual home to a 
conclusion.  Nothing says we are going no where like that undecided 
after years.  That has to be an absolute priority!  Our ability to run a 
server farm, a forked version of AMO and to build Thunderbird on the 
Mozilla platform not withstanding. Regardless of our future home all 
those things will have to be addressed.  No one is going to be doing it 
for us.

I would like to see us reaching out to our users with a path forward,  
what is our plan over the next 2 years?  Well it all hinges on what our 
home is does it not.

But here are some of the oft requested features our users appear to 
expect and we do not deliver;

  * A multi line mail list.  Something like postbox, Outlook and Mac
    Mail have had for a long time.
  * Import and export of the Thunderbird profile natively.  (how 1985 is
    manual copying of files and folders to a usb drive. These are people
    that compute with their fingers, and expect wizards to hold their hands)
  * Backup/Restore of mail
  * Backup/Restore of address books
  * Native support for card dav
  * MailDir (it is almost complete but has gone no where in years really)
  * Folder ordering (including a work / Personal delineation that
    extends to the address book  so auto fill only looks for work
    addresses in work accounts.)

When I first lobbed into a Thunderbird support site users were 
requesting all of those features.  We delivered chat.

Then I think we need to discuss the user interface option of no menu.  
This applies to Windows only.  Some say it is best to follow what 
Microsoft wants.  I say we should be offering our users the choice as 
part of the installer.  We have dumbed the process down so far that 
unless you know there are menus,  they can not find them.

Firefox went with the three line hamburger menu on the toolbar, we did 
the same.  But in all seriousness,  this menu is simply confusing even 
to me.  To take this recent discussion on user interface further.  A 
regular request in support is how to add another account to Thunderbird.

So then we have to start explaining to the user to click on the 
hamburger menu,  then click on the  >  beside the words "new message".  
If you click the > you get an even more confusingly labeled menu for 
"existing mail account".  Click that and it will display a wizard to 
allow you to add your extra account.

What can we do?  I do not think I am alone in thinking we simply go back 
to displaying the menu bar.

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