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July 16, 2020

Windows Insider Team: there’s Feedback, and then there’s Feedback

I appreciate t that we Windows Insiders, as well as those using general releases, are allowed to give feedback whenever we want to, on any subject. The Feedback Hub app is an excellent innovation: making it into an integral part of the Windows 10 user experience is a wise decision. When I upgrade to a new Insider build, and something breaks or stops working, I am able to leave feedback immediately.

However, using feedback to make numbers look nice is not good. I am talking about this:

That tweet is from March of this year, but it happens after each new build. I am starting to get sick and tired for it. I am willing to bet my shirt that the vast majority of Windows Insiders faced with this question within a few hours after a new build gets installed will select 4 or 5. A happy Insider got a new build, so of course he / she rates it highly.

My question, the one I have often asked of the Insider team but never got an answer to is “What’s the point?” How on earth could I tell you if I can or will recommend the new build when I have just installed it? I’m just starting to become familiar with this thing, and already you ask if I find it good?

The same goes for your apps. The featured image in this post, just above the post title, appeared to me inside the Edge browser less than an hour after upgrading to build 18912 on Wednesday night. An hour and a half later I was asked how likely I am to recommend build 18912 to a friend or colleague. How can I rate an app or a new build before I have even synced my favorites and settings, checked that the software works as it should and so on, before I have really tested it? The same question is shown for many Microsoft Store apps, often just after installing them.

Edge is also known to ask about my willingness to recommend it just after an upgrade. About this, I have also asked several times, and never gotten an answer, either:

OK, of course I understand the nature of these questions asked just hours after an upgrade. The psychological factor involved in these questions makes it quite clear that those who answer will mostly leave positive feedback. A 4 or 5, as I said earlier. But: how reliable are these polls, really? Can the Windows Insider team for instance say that 90% of Insiders recommend build 18912, if that percentage is from answers gotten within hours after those Insiders upgraded?

I’m just asking…


Author: Kari Finn

A former Windows Insider MVP, Kari started in computing in the mid 80’s writing code for VAX / VMS systems. Since then, he’s worked in a variety of IT positions. He specializes in Windows image capture, customization, repair and deployment as well as Hyper-V virtualization. Kari is a proud Team Member at number #1 Windows site TenForums.com.

2 Responses “Windows Insider Team: there’s Feedback, and then there’s Feedback”

  1. CountMike
    June 7, 2019 at 10:40

    I stopped answering on things like that. They may be looking for statistics but it’s not logical. If an update doesn’t succeed I wouldn’t recommend it and if it does than it’s good enough although no stages are needed, it’s good or not.

    • June 7, 2019 at 22:24

      I find it somewhat unethical that they show these to users only hours after they have upgraded.

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