Hello, I’m Nick. I manage our Information Experience (IX) team, a role which includes the scoping of our documentation platform.

In the coming weeks we’re updating the site with better global navigation, cleaned-up information architecture, standardized page layouts, enhanced screenshots, and improvements to key content.

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We’re also making some important structural changes, particularly a decision to shut down page comments.

The decision comes at no small cost to Atlassian’s technical writing team. All of us appreciate the chance to speak directly with customers and fielding questions and digging into specific use cases is a great way to learn the ropes of a product.

So why did we make the call?

  • Committing to moderating page comments creates two huge problems: an ever-increasing amount of comments to moderate and, as a result, proportional overhead on the team. For a company of our size, it just doesn’t scale.
  • Only about 20% of comments are contextual. The rest are various types of requests such as support, new features, and general product inquiries. We need to promote better wayfinding from the documentation to the other, more suitable Atlassian channels, and use our limited time in the most efficient way possible. We’ll still listen to and help our customers, we’re just shifting the arena.
  • Comments languish unanswered if the IX team doesn’t have bandwidth to review them. Today, the most responsive doc space only achieves between a 60-80% response rate, with most spaces below 40%. That’s an unacceptable user experience.
  • There’s no quick or easy mechanism to archive outdated comments, meaning new readers often encounter outdated answers and workarounds in the comments.
  • We classed a trial of a ‘no-comments space’ (Jira Service Desk) as successful. The trial ran for nearly a year and responses from our customer-facing teams have been positive.

The IX team will throw its collective time and energy into our community channel, Atlassian Answers, with every writer dedicating time to fielding your questions.

For now, we’ll create a very simple link to Answers but – in as short a time as we can deliver it – we’ll create a frictionless experience for users to ask questions about a specific piece of our documentation.

Atlassian Answers combines the full power of our IX team, other prominent Atlassians, community leaders, and a vast amount of engaged customers to provide timely, contextual guidance. See you over there!

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