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Is there anyway to respond to some comments privately on the Ubuntu software center? Some users of my app seem to be having problems but have not filed bug reports or asked questions on the launchpad support page that would easily clear up their issues.

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up vote 13 down vote accepted

There is no way to do that through the Ubuntu Software Center UI or through apps.ubuntu.com. However, you can use this workaround:

  1. Submit a query to the reviews API for your app. It will look like the one below. Just enter this as URL to the browser and you'll get the data.

    http://reviews.ubuntu.com/reviews/api/1.0/reviews/filter/$LANG/ubuntu/$SERIES/$VERSION/$PACKAGE/

    Note: for commercial apps, 'Ubuntu' is not the origin, as they are published in PPAs. Use the URL scheme below for them:

    https://reviews.ubuntu.com/reviews/api/1.0/reviews/filter/any/any/any/any/$PACKAGE/

    This will get you reviews for a package. Note that most fields here can be replaced with any. For example, here are reviews of Warsaw written for 11.10.

  2. Once you've got the data on your browser, look for the reviewer_username value on the review you want to reply to. This will correspond to the Launchpad ID of the reviewer.

  3. You can then go to https://launchpad.net/~$REVIEWER_USERNAME (substituting $REVIEWER_USERNAME by the right value) and contact the reviewer through their e-mail. If they've set their e-mail to private, you can use the Launchpad contact form to get in touch with them directly.

It might be a bit convoluted, but it should get you what you need.

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This looked promising, but when I tried what you suggested, I just got empty brackets ([]) on the page. Here's an e.g. reviews.ubuntu.com/reviews/api/1.0/reviews/filter/any/ubuntu/… –  Ian B. Jan 27 '13 at 14:43
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For commercial apps, 'ubuntu' isn't the origin, it's a ppa instead. Here's a url which displays the reviews: reviews.ubuntu.com/reviews/api/1.0/reviews/filter/any/any/any/… –  Michael Nelson Jan 28 '13 at 13:01
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No, currently no way to contact your users using through software center, BTW you can explicitly mention that bugs must be filed in the launchpad instead of posting in the review section.

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Any suggestions on where to give Canonical feedback on this feature? Or is submitting a bug report the only option? –  Ian B. Jan 25 '13 at 19:44
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@Ian Please file a bug on software-center, there should certainly be a way for developers to respond to user issues. I did a quick search and wasn't able to find one so it might not be filed yet. –  Jorge Castro Jan 26 '13 at 0:40
    
Thanks... Filed the bug at bugs.launchpad.net/ubuntu/+source/software-center/+bug/1106954 –  Ian B. Jan 27 '13 at 14:49
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