Gez wrote:Whereas with the forum, people still come to visit regularly if only to see what other non-bug-report-related threads are going...
I think that's critical - and even more so than just for the reasons that Gez mentions.
People are often coming here anyway to find out/post about mods/editing/whatever. So they might post a bug report, or contribute to one, because they were "in the neighbourhood". Sort of a "oh, while I'm here, I noticed..." situation.
Even though it is just visiting an extra page, like it could be argued visiting the bugs forum is, for many people making a bug report on GitHub will feel like an extra step and a psychological barrier. They are unlikely to be visiting GitHub regularly. They will not be as familiar with its interface and slightly more "techy" feel. I suspect it will seem like extra "effort" for many people. It could be enough extra effort for some people that the end result would be people simply not bothering to report stuff they might have done on these forums. Even I have done that with some other programs I use, and I am quite happy to use GitHub. However, sometimes, I catch myself thinking "I can't be bothered right now; I'll do it later." Most times I do, but sometimes I forget.
So while I sympathise, support and agree with the reasoning, it could reduce the number of bug reports and follow-up posts (and the Mantis experience certainly supports this viewpoint).
What would be ideal would be some way of smoothing the interface between GitHub and the forum somehow. I dunno, some way of being able to generate GitHub issues via the forum (perhaps a data-entry form here that feels like the forum but which requires all the info needed to open a GitHub issue and then auto-opens one) and some way of the forum being able to read the GitHub issue reports and present them here as if they were a forum thread. I'm guessing such a system does not exist, but that would allow people to use the forum for the bug interface, but also allow the devs all the advantages of having the issues tracked properly on GitHub.
Or maybe a brutal "cut off the bug reports forum and only accept bugs via GitHub" is the way to go*. It would force anyone who wants to make a report to use it and, after a period of "pain" it would just become the way it's done and people would do it. That probably would still leave the problem of people not returning to check their issues and post any requested additional information. But, as has been said, perhaps the fact that GitHub emails you about replies would solve that - though, (as Rachael said) it didn't really help with Mantis. I think that was, again, just the "it feels like another step" problem. It's the difference between "I'm visiting the forum anyway - ooh look, new posts" and "I've got an email for me to go to GitHub, I'll click the link later." The email gets forgotten and the link never gets clicked.
*Or maybe that would encourage people to post in other areas of the forum instead. There is already a problem with people "reporting" bugs in the wrong place (on Discord).