OT: forum etiquette
katir at hindu.org
Tue Mar 7 22:40:20 EST 2006
I thought this site useful:
and particularly this section:
Don't claim that you have found a bug
When you are having problems with a piece of software, don't claim
you have found a bug unless you are very, very sure of your ground.
Hint: unless you can provide a source-code patch that fixes the
problem, or a regression test against a previous version that
demonstrates incorrect behavior, you are probably not sure enough.
This applies to webpages and documentation, too; if you have found a
documentation “bug”, you should supply replacement text and which
pages it should go on.
Remember, there are many other users that are not experiencing your
problem. Otherwise you would have learned about it while reading the
documentation and searching the Web (you did do that before
complaining, didn't you?). This means that very probably it is you
who are doing something wrong, not the software.
The people who wrote the software work very hard to make it work as
well as possible. If you claim you have found a bug, you'll be
impugning their competence, which may offend some of them even if you
are correct. It's especially undiplomatic to yell “bug” in the
When asking your question, it is best to write as though you assume
you are doing something wrong, even if you are privately pretty sure
you have found an actual bug. If there really is a bug, you will hear
about it in the answer. Play it so the maintainers will want to
apologize to you if the bug is real, rather than so that you will owe
them an apology if you have messed up.
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