Dropbox Buries Faithful Power Users' Popular Request To Save Versatile Public Folders

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Yesterday, we reported on Dropbox’s decision to kill off the public folders feature. Understandably, long-time Dropbox users who rely on the functionality were upset about news, although the company explained that it will not end support until September 1st, 2017.

On such user, Richard K.26, took it upon himself to write an open letter to Dropbox explaining why public folders are so important to users, and why the company should reconsider axing the feature. “I’ve been using this handy feature ever since I first started with Dropbox many years ago,” writes Richard K.26. “It's very convenient to simply drop in a file, and grab the URL with a single click. Using your ‘Share Links’ feature takes more steps and is not as frictionless an experience.

“I have over 300 files in my Public folder, and it would be impractical to manage all of them as shared links.”

If you recall, Dropbox is pushing users to use Shared Links, but this functionality is nowhere close to be a 1:1 replacement for Public Folders, and in most instances, is actually a step backwards for file management and sharing.

Richard K.26 goes on to write:

When I share content, I make an effort to only use services from providers I trust who will keep that content where I put it indefinitely (or at least until I'm no longer around to care). It was a big deal and leap of faith, moving from my FTP server to using your software instead. I trusted you. You broke that trust. And now you're going to make me look like a fool on every single forum where I included content from my Dropbox.

In order to get his point across, he submitted the open letter as a Feature Request for Dropbox, and it quickly shot up to be the seventh most popular request (as determined by Dropbox’s own tracker) out of 15,000. Given the intense public backlash, this shouldn’t come as a surprise.

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However, Dropbox responded to the Feature Request by removing it altogether (and merged it into the original thread we discussed yesterday). Dropbox has made its mind up and it doesn’t appear that anything that users say [at this point] is going to be enough to reverse the course that it is currently taking. However, if you rile up enough veteran users, those relatively quiet voices will turn into louder yells and may eventually grow into deafening roars that will be hard to ignore for the next nine months.