JIRA Change Continued

We have lots of speculation on why the Lindens made the JIRA change. I think we have a bit more evidence as to the reason. As I think it was mostly from the abusive posts in the JIRA, I may read too much in this. But, I think I’m pretty much on point.

This appeared in the Deploys thread this week.

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This is not a forum thread for off-topic and unproductive ranting. I will no longer tolerate it. This forum thread is to discuss newly found issues in the Release Candidate channels. If you feel the need to have your opinions heard on topics unrelated to new bugs then please start your own thread. If an individual continues to post unproductive and off-topic comments I will take measures to remedy that.

If you are unsure about your posting please read this: “Linden Lab Official:Community Participation Guidelines”

You can make your own call as to whether the Lab has changed things due to abusive people or not.

20 thoughts on “JIRA Change Continued

  1. Although I can understand why you would believe it was the possible abuse of some comments on the JIRA issues that might have been the root cause for LL shutting down the JIRA, I can tell you that “IF” this even was the reason – it was not at the LL staff level. Of course LL staff as well as the JIRA community would grit their teeth when off-topic comments were posted, but LL staff in general are totally NOT IN FAVOR of the knee jerk decision to gag the JIRA. Trust me on that. The value of the JIRA to LL was far far greater than any negatives in the existing JIRA.

    This was done at the top levels of LL…. TOP LEVEL.

    • I agree this is not a resident-facing-Linden decision. I also agree it was at some level above them. I am not sure it came from the very top. I’ve seen no evidence of that. I do think it was approved at some high level. But, at CEO or board level… I have doubts. But, that is only my opinion.

  2. Its my strong opinions too that I think it came at the CEO level as I believe choking off the JIRA was part of Rodvik’s policy to close up communication avenues with the customers. I explained the several reasons on the SL forum, but my suspicion is that he believes that LL aires its weaknesses to openly and lets LL’s customers stick their noses into LL’s plans and development too much. Its not the EA way to doing business and Rodvik likely believes places like the JIRA will add risk to his sole objective of converting SL into a GAMERS Platform. He doesnt want the new Gamers to see all the unresolved bugs to show.

    Again, we both are in 100% agreement that its the upper levels – I think pulling of the gagging of JIRA had to have come from the culture changing level of the CEO or at minimum one of his recent EA hired grunts that are executing on HIS wishes.

    • Well… I disagree on the motivation and I doubt it was at CEO level. But, you could be right on both.

    • Rodvik is on record as wanting to “put the lab back in Linden Lab”, and I see very little evidence to the contrary. They have been shovelling power tools for creators into SL since he took over.

      If that enables somebody to create something which attracts those dangerous “gamers” (am I one? I *gasp* even own a PS3!), well, great! One more person who got drawn in by what they saw in SL. And trust me, when they want to shoot things in high FPS, they’ll boot up the latest triple-A shooter; they’ll not buy out and remake an SL jazz club.

      I find it absurd to believe that anybody in LL is under the delusion that they can entice people away from the latest Modern Warfare by providing pathfinding targets to shoot at.

      The cutting off of the jira is probably the one thing I can see as evidence against.”putting the lab back”. If I *have* to think up an explanation in that light, it would be wanting people to talk less *about the platform* and (by extension) more about *the content*, but in that case, somebody was obviously unaware of how much of a creator’s resource the jira actually is.

      -And I don’t think cutting the participants off from the inner workings is a good way to go for a “lab” in the first place.

      • I disagree about their being motivated to hide problems. I see no evidence of that. Trying to use the JIRA Change as proof of that is pretty much circular logic, IMO.

        I do very much agree on the ‘unaware’. I way agree on ‘cutting off’ as being negative. However, I do expect that to be corrected, but it is going to take some time.

        In the past and currently the Lab invites people to help in various ways. In some cases the invitations caused controversy. Invitations are often framed in ways to protect the Lab that offend some. There is no way to avoid offending someone somewhere. But, as the Lab learns who to trust, those invitations continue a bit more discreetly. So, I expect over time there will be a growing group of people that have signed Contribution Agreements that are allowed to see all the bug reports.

        Plus Alexa is looking to see if it will be possible to push all new BUG entries to a special section of the forum. Her comment on that subject pretty much discounts the hiding idea.

        • Lets just say that your belief that Sr. LL management was blissfully unaware of the impacts of gagging the JIRA would be a bad belief 🙂 The decision makers that pulled the trigger to gag the JIRA did it with very full understanding of the impact of the JIRA GAG. The LL staff – more so those veteran LL staff that have a very strong culture of LL’s long standing history of open communications and dialog with their customer base – likely made it VERY clear to the decision makers about how stupid a move this was. They did because they would be the ones that would be directly and painfully impacted with the results. It likely almost came to fist-a-cuffs between the old culture in LL that strongly believes in maintaining an open interactive communication with its SL customers and those new LL staff directly mandated to execute Rod’s “CLOSE COMMUNICATIONS WITH CUSTOMERS” policy. But of course if the old staff want to keep their jobs – there was likely nothing more they could do. They concerns were veto’ed and the JIRA WAS GAGGED.

          As I have said in other places, the Gagging of the JIRA is just the most visible of many actions that have been taking place at LL to execute Rod’s policy to put up walls between LL and its customers and the outside world. Rod wants a more formal “US AND THEM” relationship with clear lines that We are the Provider and You are the customer.

          So… this Jira Gagging – it was not done out of naivety. They knew the impacts.

  3. I took Oskar’s post as, if anything, exemplifying an alternative approach to that taken with the Jira. His comment about no longer tolerating abusive posts in the Server Release thread seems to follow logically from his post the previous week:

    I appreciate that people need a place to rant, but many comments in this thread are borderline unacceptable. We work hard here and many worked over the weekend on a holiday weekend to make sure things would be ready for a Tuesday morning release. That is how we have done it every other time we’ve had a holiday on a Monday. I am not sure why you think it would be different this week. A showstopper blocker issue was discovered and we cannot promote it to the main channel. I am sure you can understand the need to stop issues before they reach main channel wherever and whenever we can.

    That is, he’s quite rightly tired of people ranting so he’s put them on notice to behave or face the consequences, as opposed to closing his threads down all together.

    I was interested to see that Oskar invited people to file bugs in the jira and also post them in his thread, for discussion:

    We will be monitoring this thread during the next week so please feel free to post issues that you feel have been introduced by the new code. Please file a JIRA for issues you find and post the JIRA link into this thread. It really helps us out. When determining if issues are relevant or not research is key. Tracking down exactly the right situation where an issue is occurring greatly speeds up the development process to get fixes in place.

    That seems a rather different emphasis from the one we’ve seen in the jira as a whole.

    • I pretty much agree. I think limitations in the JIRA software may make the emphasis look different. But, I can’t be sure. I think a company internal policy may have changed. I would think that may be a Rod/CEO change. JF that is so, what we are seeing is the various teams/departments coming into compliance as best they can or think they should. So, each may look a bit different.

      I don’t know if they were told to “do this” or if they were told to “address and correct this” in which case they would have more leeway. Either way things are changing. I think as time passes the ‘direction’ or policy will become more clear.

      • Oskar really doesn’t sound too impressed with the new system. When asked, later in the thread, about the point of posting urls in the thread leading to bug reports most people can’t see,
        he replies:

        Oh right… yeah I’m still trying to figure that out. I guess one could file a bug, post the link here with the title and description. Then others can comment on it.

        • Yeah, it is a problem. How we have worked with JIRA’s is going to have to change. I suspect in 2 or 3 months, may be sooner, things will change again… or we’ll learn new ways to handle the same problems.

  4. I suspect you are right Nal, and agree that LL needed to take more control over the jira. As has happened in the past, however, they overreacted, massively!
    If they are tired of resident temper tantrums, they have only shown that they (or whoever made this decision) is just as bad.
    sigh — we all pay the price because a few people, resident and Linden are childish.

    • I disagree. Management could simply have decided they have had enough of their people being abused. As I responded to Innula, it may have been an upper management policy change. Whether it was a ‘fix this’ or a removal of some restraint, things are changing.

      I do not think it childish to respond to abuse and take measures to stop it. That they took away useful tools in the process is a problem. I don’t see it as childish as much as I see it being a lack of understanding how the JIRA is used in so many ways. I think most of us that have been around SL awhile understand there are problems for everyone when it comes to understanding how everything in SL is interrelated and works together. SL may well be the most complicated software and social system on the planet… short of RL which doesn’t have to be programmed…

  5. A couple of years ago I pointed out to LL’s legal department that their conditions for contributing to the JIRA included that the user should have signed a Contribution Agreement – and that this was clearly not happening. I expected them to change the conditions, but didn’t hear anything from them, or when I sent a chaser.

    Maybe someone finally found the email!

  6. Oskar’s approach is if anything the opposite of what’s been done with JIRA. Rather than turtle up, Oskar’s willing to kick troublemakers out of the thread and delete their posts. If JIRA were managed that way, it’d be useful to both residents and Lindens.

    • I tend to agree.

      I know the Forum software is made to handle blocking individual users in simple ways. This is a common task for forum managers.

      The JIRA software is different. It is designed as an in-house tool. The problems of rants and problem people would be unlikely to come up. If they did a manager would talk to the employee and problem solved or fired. The features would simply not be needed.

      The difference in software may be responsible for the apparent difference in response.

  7. The first reasonable explanations for LL’s actions are from Hitomi above and in your response to Jack Abraham.
    What has not been explained (and probably never will be) is LL’s playing into the drama in the way they implemented things. If they had given an explanation and offered a viable alternative communication path from the start, the incident would have been accepted by most people. Of course there would have been some people who would voice their resistance to change, but that is always expected.

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