How expendable are your early users?
I was a little frustrated by Quora’s recent introduction of boards, which removed my blog titles and dumped them into a board. It also reduced the positive impact of votes on the content.*
When Yahoo! decided they were going to shutter Delicious a few months ago, users were outraged.
Summify announced that they were bought by Twitter this week (congrats!), and announced at the same time that they’d be closing large chunks of the product. Users were annoyed.
I admire at least two of these teams (guess :)), and trust their product judgement. I know that finding the right path sometimes means changing course and pissing users off.
But the other side of me feels saddened at the expendability of users, many of whom are the first to try, support and evangelize an untested product.
What do you guys think about this balance? Do startups have any obligation to early users?
*They’ve since reintroduced titles, and were pretty responsive while doing it.