I'm sure that the Kobo staff do read these threads, and that they do provide very useful feedback, even though they must find some of the negativity irritating.
But as someone who has run product development and maintenance teams before, I'd like to mention a couple of things that a lot of people don't seem to understand:
1. Our feedback represents our own personal point of view. Not surprisingly there are many different points of view, sometimes conflicting with each other. We are often unaware of those other points of view, or just don't care about them (for example what people in other countries want, or people who buy from the Kobobooks store vs. people who sideload, or casual readers who value simplicity over power). The things that people ask for often involve trade-offs. The product manager has to balance all of those things and decide the priorities. It's not an easy job.
2. Much of the advice offered to Kobo on how to manage their firmware development is naive. Costs and resources impose severe constraints on what can be done. The top priority is to maintain the financial viability of the product line, not to satisfy users - and no, those things are often not directly related. If the product line becomes unprofitable, it will be shut down and there will be no more new models and no more firmware development. Opening up the PR process to all customers for a consumer product would be hopeless - most people have no idea how to properly perform tests or report problems, so the signal-to-noise ratio would be too low to be useful.
None of that should stop us from asking for what we want or complaining about the things we don't like. But it's understandable why we don't always get what we want.
Last edited by FJames; 05-17-2013 at 10:46 AM.