How the testing process should go:
You have worked very hard on a pattern and have taken the time to carefully type it into the ribbuild system, making sure that you have formatted it in such a way that all the features work and the pattern is complete and understandable.
You open a tester call and ask a few people to use your pattern and see if you have any mistakes/errors/typos/missing information and that the pattern as written will produce the item as described.
You set your expectations up front for what you would like from the testers in terms of colors, sizes, textures, feedback, pictures, journals, and deadlines.
You remember that these volunteers are doing you a favor by making sure you publish a good pattern, and you treat them with respect.
When testing is finished, you thank these testers and give them something for their efforts, gifting them the pattern is customary.
You read the tester call carefully and make sure you understand what you are being asked to test.
You take note of the expectations of the designer and ask for any exceptions or clarifications before you agree to participate in the testing call.
You remember that you made a promise to the designer and took a spot in their scheduled timeline for the pattern release and you actually participate and work on the pattern as promised
You communicate with the designer both in the reporting of edits to be made and your progress.
Then the tester gives the designer what they asked for, and the designer rewards the tester as promised in exchange.
I read a lot of complaining from testers about designers that never followed through on their promise or refused to communicate with them…and worst of all, either never published the pattern or published it without making any of the corrections. This is all unfair.
I read a lot less complaining about testers, but there are so many times that they sign up (or literally BEG) to be a tester and then never even start it. They will not ask or answer any questions. They will not make a journal or send photos. Communications will go ignored. They will stop in the middle and claim they didn’t know what the pattern would be for. And worst of all, go through the entire process, get the gifted pattern, then unpublish their journal and review. This is all unfair.
Some of this is caused by unethical persons, some of this is rooted in immaturity. Most of this could be avoided with proper communication and respect for each other’s time and effort.
I completely agree! I am both a designer and tester.
As a designer i have had a lot of testers, but there have been numbers of them that never get back to me or even start it. Or they do complete it and i ask if they could kindly provide a photo or leave a journal/review and it gets completely ignored
As a tester, i usually am eager to complete the pattern asap and typically have it completed in the next day or so, and contact the designer to let them know i have finished their pattern. But i have had some designers that do not even acknowledge that i have completed their pattern
It can be so hard. I had 2 testers not do the pattern at all recently.
I forget to mention journals so most my testers haven’t made one on the pattern they tested. This is an issue I need to look at remembering but I also assume people will do as a base because I try to always include a journal for what I’ve tested, whether asked to or not.
A number of people I tested for also didn’t bother to gift me the pattern later(fine for free patterns). It kinda puts me off testing on ribblr and I’m so anxious I just won’t chase people up on things for fear of upsetting someone or starting drama with designers and their friends
As a designer, I tend to accept every tester that applies. My last test made me start a list of not gonna use them again. I understand 2nd chances and may include that someday. But in the future I will only share a pattern a bit at a time, as journals are started, then as sections get done. It may be a hassle to the good testers though so that would be bad. We’ll see.
My last test stats:
I accepted 10.
6 completed the test, with journals. Thank you(s). Very much!
4 did not.
Out of those 4, 3 had no communication with me at all and no journal.
1 communicated an issue so I added time and gifted the pattern. To this day. It is still not finished. More testing for others has been done since.
Overall, I know it will be important for me in the future to keep the list going.
It started Christmas 1973,my cousin Chuck jumped on my brand new tea table and broke the legs off. Instead of an apology , he laughed. After my dad did his best to fix it, that cousin was back for new years and broke it again beyond repair. I learned then that when people tell you who they are, believe them, and don’t give them the chance to hurt you again.
I don’t test at all (nor do I ever offer to do so) because I work full time and can’t guarantee I can complete the project if a deadline is in place. It is not fair to the designer if you commit to their deadline and then drop off the face of the earth and never complete it
I also never do mystery KAL(knit a long) or CAL (crochet a long) because I prefer to know what it is that I’m making and don’t want to waste my time on an item I can’t use.
All I really want is the finished item, if the pattern was clearly written, and if the pattern produces the item/size it says it will. If there are notes within the journal about corrections that need to be made (I prefer dm’s for that) then the final entry should also include that all issues mentioned were corrected by the designer. (because some testers have left it there as the final entry even though they know that it was all corrected)
I also would prefer any issues found would be listed in the message I send out between us. The journal simply shows progress. and yarn and hook choices if applicable. The final picture is the ultimate goal for me.
Also, the communication between us can explain any issues you may have getting the testing finished. As another post suggested, people may have personal issues that could get in the way. Please send me a message, or ask me to send you one if needed. I just need communication somehow. I really am easy to get along with, as long as you do what you say. All I expect is a finished project with a journal photo. Time frame just helps it get published sooner.
In a journal I’d say let people know the process of the piece. It’s cool if you can take a photo at different stages of the project, but one final picture, along with some comments about the process is fine. Personally I ask for full notes to be sent separately, I prefer journals to be more for potential buyers to read and make a decision. Kind of a review thing, know what I mean? So in it, talk about the difficulty, clarity, what you liked etc.
You cannot change the title, but I have been changing the wording forever. In my journals when I test, I put up a photo every night (ish) showing the progress of the day. With notes about it. I delete them when I get a new updated picture of the same part, if applicable. Like one leg done, vs two.
It makes it so much easier than writing a review.
I only wish there could be more than one journal per pattern per user. It seems that if that person makes a second item from the same pattern, the journal just gets updated but still only shows as one journal of someone were looking at the pattern