POLICY: feedback discussion splitting

We’re introducing a “feedback discussion splitting” policy on this forum. What this means is that while it’s totally ok for people to leave feedback on a broad set of subjects in a single message, rather than continuing the discussion of that feedback in a single thread, moderators will close the thread and request that if anyone wants to continue discussion of a specific subject, they do so in a new thread and link to the original post.


The rationale for this policy is that posts including many different topics tend to become contentious in a way that isn’t any specific participant’s fault. When there are a lot of subjects to discuss, many people will chime in to agree or disagree, and even if any single post would be fine in isolation, the pile-on effect of having so many people jump in tends to be a bit overwhelming, which can cause initially civil discussions to become heated. Not only is this unpleasant, but when discussions of many subjects are mixed together, valuable conversations are drowned out. Requiring more focused discussions allows each conversation to be better and reduces the “pile on effect”. And if any one follow-up conversation gets overheated, it can be slowed down or closed without affecting other discussions.

Splitting Off Topics

When creating a new thread to discuss a specific subject, just link to the original post that brought it up and quote the specific part of the post you’re replying to. If multiple threads about the same subject are started based on the same original post, they may be merged.

Whether you are the original poster or not, please keep in mind that many subjects are already well known, having been extensively discussed. Be aware, moreover, that well-known issues are often being actively worked on. If there’s nothing new to be said about a well-trod subject, a new thread about it may be closed. Feel free to mention well-known issues in umbrella feedback posts as something that you care about — that’s useful feedback — but we’re not going to have yet another discussion unless there are new, concrete ideas for how to improve some aspect.

For example, everyone knows that time to first plot (TTFP) is an annoyance. Heck, we even coined a catchy term for it. TTFP is aggressively worked on by the compiler team: it has been cut in half with every major release since 1.3. It is not yet solved, but another thread insisting that it is an existential issue for the project (yet here we are) is not constructive. The subject has been discussed and is being worked on. There are also many well-known work-arounds (Revise, DaemonMode, PackageCompiler, etc.) that are mentioned every time someone complains about the issue. If none of these workarounds are satisfactory to you, that’s understandable — different people have different requirements. We hope that you check back in a year or so, at which point your use case may be feasible.

Flagging Feedback Posts

When someone posts a list of feedback, keep in mind that it is fine to do so (please don’t chastise them for it), but please do bring it to the attention of moderators by flagging the post, picking the “Something Else” option and writing “feedback bundle” or something like that. Moderators will close the topic, link to this post and then people can start individual discussions as appropriate.