tl;dr: Newly-submitted ideas will start out in a new non-voting stage: Initial Stage: We are reviewing your idea.
Next week, starting on Monday, June 17, we will change how newly-submitted ideas behave and display. When someone creates a new idea, it will be in a not-yet-open-for-voting status called: Initial Stage: We are reviewing your idea. This should improve the experience for the vast majority of users.
Why the change?
We are aligning the behavior of a brand-new idea with what has long been the practice. A member of the Community Team reviews every idea that comes in. Many of these new ideas turn out to be duplicates of existing ideas, or contain multiple separate requests; when that’s the case, we move the ideas into a non-voting status. While our documentation asks our members to wait for the review process to unfold before promoting the idea, we recognize that not every person has seen that directive before submitting a new idea. And while we strive to review each idea as quickly as possible, the reality is it might be a day or two before one of us gets to it.
What problem does this change solve?
When new ideas arrive in the Ideas forum open for voting by default, we’ve seen scenarios unfold that do not make for a good user experience. For example:
- If the author and/or proponents of an idea promote it widely and many people vote upon it before the Community Team has performed its review, and a member of our team then closes it for voting, it results in a poor user experience for those who have voted upon the idea, only to find that they are now being directed elsewhere. (In case you’re wondering why we don’t just merge the votes for the new idea with the ones for the existing ideas: yes, we’d love to be able to do that, but our platform does not afford us that functionality.)
- If the idea has been promoted widely and a member of the Community Team moves it to Moderating status to request clarification, ask the author to edit the idea, or archives it as a duplicate, that too creates a poor user experience for those who have received the idea link and come to the Ideas forum with the intention of voting for it, only to find that they are unable to do so.
What can I expect?
Starting next week, when you write a new idea, it will automatically go into a non-voting status called Initial Stage: We are reviewing your idea. We hope the stage name and its status will make apparent in the UI what has already been the documented practice for ideas.
This small change is part of our continuous review of our ideas process. If you’re interested in the evolution of the ideas process over time, please have a look at Adaptation: Feature Idea Process Changes.
Thanks for being a part of the Community and sharing your feedback and ideas with us!