Can users affect Zotero feature prioritization?

Zotero seems to have a number of requested features that 1) the devs agree would be useful or at least not harmful to planned features or workflows, 2) have been requested for a very long time (10+ years in some cases), 3) would have a large impact on at least some significant number of current users, and 4) seem to be very low priority for the dev team as the features have not been announced as actively being developed or planned for any specific Zotero release.

In the past, some users have suggested ways to encourage work on these features, such as bounty programs, but these were strongly rejected by the devs. Devs sometimes justify their decisions to prioritize certain features based on their understanding of user needs, but in the past have rejected any systematic data-collection about user needs based on surveys or voting for features.

Given this situation, is there anything that users can do to encourage devs to prioritize adding these not-rejected but long-delayed features?
  • I am not a dev, but maybe support for plugin developers would be a sweet spot?
  • Interesting idea. I would be interested to hear whether the dev team would welcome or discourage a user-funded bounty program for Zotero plug-ins.

    Some of the features I have in mind, however, are central to Zotero so a plug-in solution seems unlikely.
  • This post may have gotten little traction because it was posted just before the release of Zotero 6, but it is still highly relevant for Zotero users.

    @dstillman and/or any other Zotero developers, can you please comment? Thanks.
  • FWIW, as you've probably seen in past discussions, the core dev team has always been very skeptical about this. I doubt there's any change on that. They clearly value and heavily take into account user feedback (see the adjustments, e.g., to the note editor both during the beta and after the 6.0 release), but I doubt they're going to have any formal channel of influence on priorities or design decisions.
    Especially for core features, there's also lots of questions about sequencing that aren't going to be obvious to users from the outside (e.g., there's a reason new item types are only coming now, say).

    The one thing that has worked on occasion in the past are well prepared PRs (that's how relative links got introduced), but there's no guarantee, and they'd have to be preceded by a discussion on design & implementation strategy and come from fairly skilled devs able to follow Zotero's style.
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